Labour MEP for Scotland, Catherine Stihler, has written to Shadow Brexit Secretary Keir Starmer to urge him to reconsider the party’s approach ahead of crunch Brexit votes in the Commons next week.
Ms Stihler, vice-chair of the European Parliament’s Internal Market Committee and a member of the European Economic Area (EEA) Joint Parliamentary Committee, wrote:
I felt no option but to write to you in my capacity as vice-chair of the Internal Market Committee of the European Parliament and one of the longest serving members of the EEA JPC in the EU to reiterate our conversation from January.
There is only one Single Market and we have two ways to access the benefits: as a full EU member with influence; or through the EEA with market access and no influence. The idea that we can have access to the EU Single Market in a unique way is not an option.
To keep repeating this is not only misleading, but in Brussels – where we require to influence – looks as though we are not taking the EU seriously.
The EU has been clear that you cannot have the benefits of the EU Single Market without the responsibilities.
I urge you to reconsider your approach and support the only way to Single Market access if you no longer are a full member of the EU, through the EEA.