Following warnings that post-Brexit import controls will raise food prices and risk supply delays, the SNP’s Economy spokesperson has said Scotland’s businesses and consumers are paying the price of broken, Brexit Britain.
Drew Hendry MP has slammed the Tory government’s handling of Brexit as “chaotic” and criticised the Labour party for backing the Brexit deal which has pushed up the cost-of-living and left businesses struggling in Scotland and the rest of the UK.
The import controls, which are set to come into force next week (31st January), have been delayed five times by the UK government because of fears that they will push up food prices in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis.
Businesses have raised concerns over a shortage of flowers for Valentine’s Day and the Fresh Produce Consortium has warned that fruit and vegetable imports will face a price hike of £200 million as a result of import controls – costs that will have to be passed onto consumers.
The UK imports around 79% of its vegetables and just under 40% of its fruit from the EU.
Commenting, Drew Hendry MP said:
“Scotland’s consumers and businesses are paying a heavy price for a Brexit we never voted for, in the middle of a cost-of-living crisis made worse by the Tory government.
“As a result of Brexit, Scotland faces an expected loss of £3 billion a year in public revenues and each person is predicted to face a cost of at least £2300 by 2035.
“On top of this, a recent report found that the average person in Scotland has missed out on £23,370 in disposable income – £13,170 higher than the UK average.
“This is the cost of Westminster control for Scotland, it is the cost of broken Brexit Britain – we all deserve so much better.
“The Tory government’s economic incompetence has damaged Scotland – voting SNP in the next general election is the only way to make Scotland Tory-free and ensure a strong team of SNP MPs are making Scotland’s voice heard at Westminster.
“Given Labour MPs backed the Brexit deal and failed to back devolving employment law, we know they can’t be trusted to represent Scotland’s interests.”