“The outcome will be minimal”

MEP Alyn Smith
MEP Alyn Smith

Scottish Member of the European Parliament Alyn Smith (SNP) joins in the criticism of the UK’s plan to heal the British economy.

Interview by Charlotte Morgenthal

What impact will the European Central bank intervention have on Scotland?

It will have a minimal impact and the meeting will moreover be about international coordination of the financial crisis.

Do you wish that Scotland has somebody sitting at the EU Council table? What difference would it make?

Yes, it is pretty much SNP policy that we have an independent Scotland within Europe. Yes, I do wish that we have access to all the levers. Our Ministers currently have a seat in the Council but they don’t have speaking rights. From the European Parliament perspective: Unless you have the right to participate you don’t really make the law for your country.

With all the voices criticising the Westminster tax cut approach this morning and yesterday: what do you think about it?

I do agree with them. There is a lot of sloppy decision making at the moment. Alistair Darling and Gordon Brown allowed the economy to get that far and it is a catastrophic failure of regulation. It is pretty much an Anglo-Saxon problem which doesn’t exist to that extent in say France or Germany. If you leave the market to itself it will pretty much destroy itself.