I was reassured today to hear the Minister for the Cabinet Office, Mr David Lidington, confirm that the UK Government has anticipated and is prepared for potential devolution consequences of Brexit. Mr Lidington explained at Cabinet Office Questions that “there has been good co-operation on frameworks to ensure that the United Kingdom single market continues to function after we leave the European Union” and went on to agree that, as a United Kingdom, we are certainly better together - I couldn't agree more.
What steps the Government are taking to strengthen the Union.
Minister for the Cabinet Office (Mr David Lidington)
Our commitment to continued work to strengthen the Union can be seen in practice through such initiatives as scrapping the Severn tolls, delivering city deals across Scotland and the entire United Kingdom, and investing in digital connectivity in Northern Ireland.
A number of my constituents have expressed concern that Scottish National party colleagues will use our departure from the European Union to justify their agenda of breaking the country apart. Can my right hon. Friend assure this House that everything is being done to anticipate potential devolution consequences of Brexit, in order that the SNP cannot exploit it to shore up its own narrow agenda of breaking up the United Kingdom?
There is no doubt that the success of the SNP agenda of separation would do enormous damage to businesses and living standards in Scotland. I can reassure my hon. Friend that there has been good co-operation on frameworks to ensure that the United Kingdom single market continues to function after we leave the European Union, but also that it is in the interest of every part of the United Kingdom that we leave the EU in an orderly fashion, in a way that protects jobs, living standards and investment in our country.