ADVANCE notice is given of an important online event to discuss how an independent Scotland could make its way back into the European Union.

On Tuesday, December 3, at 6.30pm, Dr Kirsty Hughes will lead an online discussion hosted by Yes for EU and entitled Pathways To EU Membership For An Independent Scotland. It’s a free event but you are asked to register at Eventbrite.

Dr Hughes, who is a regular contributor to The National, is director and founder of the Scottish Centre on European Relations. She is a researcher, writer and commentator on European politics and policy, and she previously worked for a number of leading European think tanks.

She will be speaking on the urgent questions about what an independent Scotland’s accession process to the EU might look like.

Yes for EU are a group of pro-EU activists who campaigned tirelessly for a people’s vote in order to stop Brexit.

They say: “We do not want to wait 10-20 years for the UK to rejoin the EU. We are now campaigning for an independent Scotland so that we can reclaim our rights as EU citizens as soon as possible.”

Promoting the event on December 3, Yes for EU, which is not affiliated to any political party, stated: “Brexit has transformed the debate over independent Scottish membership of the EU.

“In the 2014 referendum campaign, the EU’s top official actively discouraged the Yes movement. EU officials now acknowledge that Brexit has changed EU attitudes to Scottish independence. That is not to say the path to EU membership would be without complication.

“The EU requires new members to sign up to joining the Euro. The EU also requires its members to reduce any budget deficits to 3% of GDP or lower.

“One key issue would be the manner in which Scotland secured independence. The EU would frown upon a referendum like the one held in Catalonia.

“There is another important change Brexit brings to this debate: the border question. If an independent Scotland joined the EU it would be inside the European single market and customs union, while the rest of the UK was outside. This would logically require a system of checks on goods crossing the border between Scotland and England, which both the UK and Scottish governments say they do not want.

“While the EU offers Scotland barrier-free access to a much larger potential market, the vast majority of Scotland’s current trade is with the rest of the UK. Dr Kirsty Hughes will address these and other crucial issues concerning Scotland’s path to full EU membership.”