• The SNP’s Brexit Minister has suggested that the Scottish Government will try to block any exit deal unless it receives guarantees that Holyrood’s powers will be protected (Guardian, December 2017, link).
  • The referendum vote last June was for more democracy. We hope that as the Brexit negotiations progress, new opportunities to devolve powers back down to Holyrood, Cardiff Bay and Stormant are identified.
  • Remember, the SNP campaigned to stay in the EU and now want to remain a member of the EU’s single market after the Brexit vote, which would see them hand even more powers to Brussels.
  • Politicians of all parties across Britain should work together to achieve a Brexit deal which benefits the whole of the UK.

Most important aspect of future immigration system is control

  • Much has been made of the fall in net immigration in yesterday’s ONS figures.
  • It should be stressed that the Brexit vote was a vote to take back control of our borders and to ensure that politicians we elect can decide our immigration policy. This is more important than reaching a certain target of net migration.
  • Outside of the EU, we can create a fairer immigration system which welcomes in talent from around the world, whilst enabling government to manage the impact of migration on local communities and public services.

Good economic news

  • The UK’s manufacturing PMI has risen to 58.2, up from 56.6 the previous month. This the highest level since August 2013, and the tenth best registered in the past 26 years of the survey. Employment rose at the fastest rate since June 2014 following an increase in new orders and production (Markit Economics, December 2017, link)
  • An extra 196,000 businesses were created in the past year in the UK, according to figures from the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills. This demonstrates that entrepreneurs have confidence in the strength and future growth of our economy (Sun, December 2017, link)