Sturgeon meets EU’s Brexit negotiator13/07/17Government
First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon has met the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier in Brussels, Belgium.
The 45-minute private meeting on 13 July came as Barnier prepares for the second round of talks between the UK and EU.
Sturgeon’s spokesman said the Scottish government wanted to build consensus against an “extreme Brexit”.
Barnier will later hold talks with Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn and Carwyn Jones, the Welsh first minister.
However, speaking yesterday (12 July), he stressed that Brexit negotiations would only be done with the UK government.
Barnier said: “I have always made clear that I will listen to different points on view in the British debate.
“Of course, I will only negotiate with the UK government.”
He also called on the UK to offer more clarity on its position on the ‘divorce bill’ financial settlement with the EU.
Sturgeon was due to fly back to Scotland immediately after the meeting, and is expected to speak to the media at Glasgow Airport.
Ahead of the meeting, Sturgeon’s spokesman said it would be “an opportunity to brief Barnier on Scotland’s priorities and seek to enhance our understanding of the current EU position as Brexit negotiations continue”.
He added: “Our priority is protecting Scotland’s vital interests, and building consensus against an extreme Brexit outside the single market, which would be potentially disastrous for jobs, investment and living standards.”