David Barnes updated the Group on the processes being put in place within Scottish Government and between Scottish Government and Westminster, and Brussels. The main points to note are:-
Scottish Government had Director of External Affairs already but that area now boosted since EU ref result.
There is now a Cabinet sub-committee on Brexit and Mike Russell MSP as Minister for Brexit.
A Director has just been appointed to run Brussels Office in terms of Brexit and has now started.
At UK level, there was already a Joint Ministerial Committee process whereby UK Government and devolve admins come together, but it has not been particularly functional up to now. This process is being geared up to be the main way that discussions between the UK administrations will take place and Mike Russell MSP will be Scotland’s representative.
In Scottish Government, agriculture and environment/forestry directorates have joined up within what is being termed the “Brexit Hub” to ensure a joint approach to rural land-based policy making for Brexit. The Hub reports in to Mike Russell MSP, but works closely with Roseanne Cunningham MSP and Fergus Ewing MSP, as respective Cabinet Secretaries for Environmental, Climate Change and Land Reform and Rural Economy and Connectivity.
The Hub is also working closely with various expertise in trade, economics and law. And also has a secondment relationship with Jonnie Hall of NFU Scotland.
Stakeholder engagement will be important and is being activity sought as work is taken forward. There will be various means by which this will occur.