Hot on the heels of the announcement that the Scottish Government is to attempt to forge stronger economic, cultural and social links with the Scandinavian and Baltic countries comes the announcement that the First Minister is to visit Dublin again to meet with the Taoiseach and will deliver the keynote speech at the Dublin Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner. Prior to the visit she said:
‘The ties between Scotland and Ireland are more important than ever and this visit is an opportunity to build on the longstanding cultural, economic, and political links that exist between our countries. Ireland is a valued trade partner for Scotland and our sixth biggest export market with more than 100 Irish companies currently investing in Scotland. We see unlimited potential for future development and that is why we established an investment and innovation hub in Dublin last year. I look forward to meeting the Taoiseach to discuss these shared values and interests and further developing business links between our two countries.’
Scotland had £920 million of exports to Ireland in 2014, up 12% on 2013, as against £270 million of imports from Ireland making this valuable for our already quite healthy trade balance.
Once more, we see evidence of a government getting with its job of protecting Scotland’s economic interests as we face the uncertainties of Brexit. Meanwhile the alleged alternative First Minister, even Prime Minister, Ruth Davidson, is off making a right fool of herself at the Conservative Conference. English Tories are laughing up their sleeves at her attention-seeking antics.