Scottish Conservatives hold "positive and constructive" Brexit talks

Pictured (left to right) are Finlay Carson MSP, Andrea Leadsom MP, Peter Chapman MSP and Edward Mountain MSP.
Pictured (left to right) are Finlay Carson MSP, Andrea Leadsom MP, Peter Chapman MSP and Edward Mountain MSP.

Scottish Conservative MSPs have held “positive and constructive” talks at Westminster with key UK Government ministers over the future of the agriculture and fishing sectors post-Brexit.

Shadow Rural Economy and Connectivity Secretary Peter Chapman led a delegation to London to discuss priorities for Scotland in advance of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU.

The group of MSPs – Peter Chapman, Edward Mountain and Finlay Carson – set out their views on making a success of Brexit to the Secretary of State for DEFRA, Andrea Leadsom MP and Minister for Farming and Fishing, George Eustice MP.

The MSPs raised a wide range of agricultural and fishing issues with the UK Government at a time when the SNP government has been accused of failing to seize the opportunities from the EU referendum result.

Mr Carson is MSP for Galloway and West Dumfries and the Scottish party’s fishing and farming spokesman, while Mr Mountain, MSP for the Highlands and Islands region, is convener of the Scottish Parliament’s Rural Economy Committee. All three raised national and constituency issues in the meetings with ministers.

Speaking afterwards, Mr Chapman said: “The message from the Scottish Conservatives is clear – we are going to work with our colleagues in Westminster to make Brexit a success.

“We have had very constructive and positive discussions with UK ministers and we are confident that they understand the key issues facing Scotland’s farming and fishing sectors.

“This is a government that is absolutely clear on its desire to deliver a successful future for the whole UK – including Scotland.

“Too often over the past few months, we have heard nothing but grievance from the SNP over the democratic UK-wide vote to leave the EU.

“It is disappointing that the SNP won’t stop sabre-rattling at a time when we need all parts of the UK to work together to get the best result possible. A UK-wide approach to these talks can secure a deal that works for all parts of the United Kingdom and protects Scotland’s interests.”