The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill: Implications for Scotland

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Series Details SB17-54
Publication Date 24/08/2017
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This briefing examines the proposals in the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill, focussing on those which relates to the role and powers of the Scottish Parliament and Scottish Government.

Further information:

The European Union (Withdrawal) Bill was introduced in the UK Parliament on 13 July 2017. The Bill sets out proposals to leave the European Union (EU) by:

  • Repealing the European Communities Act;
  • Converting existing EU law into UK law on the date of the UK’s exit from the EU  - these laws are referred to in the Bill as retained EU law;
  • Creating temporary powers to allow UK (and devolved) Ministers to deal with any deficiencies, so that the legal system continues to function effectively.

Known as the Repeal Bill, it was designed - the government suggested - to ensure that the UK exited the EU with maximum certainty, continuity and control. As far as possible, the same rules and laws would apply on the day after exit as on the day before. It also delivered on our promise to end the supremacy of EU law in the UK.

The Scottish and Welsh Governments issued a joint statement in response to the Bill. The Scottish Government suggested that common frameworks could be achieved through negotiation and agreement, whilst the Welsh Government stated that the Bill would reduce its power and flexibility. On that basis, the Scottish and Welsh Governments announced legislative consent could not be given to the Bill in its existing form.

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