YOUNG people are not reaping the benefits of Brexit, Tory MP Andrew Bowie told the audience on BBC Scotland’s Debate Night programme.

The MP for West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine admitted Brexit is not perfect and could not tell the younger generations when they would see its perks.

Scotland voted by 62% to Remain in the EU in 2016, while 73% of people aged under 24 across the UK wanted to stay in the bloc.

Now many young adults, who had no say in the vote four years ago due to their age, are finding they have fewer opportunities than the older generations.

READ MORE: Scottish student forced to seek study abroad fund alternative to Erasmus

On the programme last night, a student named Callum said:  “Earlier on in this debate I think it was Andrew Bowie said why is independence so attractive – and for me it’s just down to one simple issue. And that’s Brexit.

“Now, I study in languages at Glasgow University and because of Brexit I’m now being deprived to go on the Erasmus programme. So for me there isn’t a benefit to leaving the European Union. Due to me studying languages, French and Italian, it’s made it more difficult to go and study in France and Italy and get the best experience possible."

Bowie told Callum he appreciated that and has “every sympathy” for him. “You and everybody else coming through right now will not have the benefits that I had through Erasmus, work, study abroad.”

He questioned how independence would solve the issues being discussed.

“What I would say is we are introducing the Turing Scheme, we are hoping very much in the near future to allow students from this country to be able to study and enjoy life abroad,” he told the student.

“But am I going to sit here and say that Brexit is perfect and your generation is going to reap the benefits? No I’m not. Because you’re not frankly at the minute. And I can see that.”

The National:

SNP MSP and Scotland’s Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop couldn’t hold back her laughter.

Presenter Stephen Jardine cut in: “You’re saying his generation are not going to reap the benefits of Brexit?”

Bowie replied: “Not right now.”

Asked when that would be, Bowie told the virtual audience: “The benefits of Brexit are going to be clear to all when we develop our economy and move into the wide world … it will come along very quickly.”

READ MORE: Erasmus: EU chief says Scotland cannot join scheme while part of the UK

Hyslop then chipped in: “The question was about time. And the young people of Scotland do not have time for you or the Conservatives to learn about Scotland and the Union, to learn about any benefits of Brexit.

"There are no benefits of Brexit. So why do young people want to be independent? Because they want to shape the country that they want. They don’t want it to be imposed on them.”

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has described the decision by UK ministers to leave the Erasmus programme – used by more than 2000 students and young people in Scotland every year – as an act of “cultural vandalism”.

Jamie Grant, the international officer of Young Scots for Independence, was shocked by Bowie's comments.

"This is a stunning admission from Andrew Bowie but while his honesty is appreciated, a rare thing from the Tories these days, it would’ve been of better use had he spoken up while Parliament was debating this issue rather than voting, as he did numerous times, to drag us out of the EU," he said.

The National:

"His vote wasn’t just a betrayal of his constituents in West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine but of an entire generation of young Scots, a massive majority of whom voted to remain."

"Young people like myself have been shafted by Andrew Bowie and his Tory colleagues who’ve thrown our opportunities under the bus to satisfy their Brexit obsession which we’ll be left to pick up the tab on for decades to come."

"The people of Scotland deserve to be back in the EU and the only way we can ensure we return is by using both SNP votes in May for an independence referendum."

The National:

On his website Bowie states he promised to deliver on the 2016 referendum results in a way “which got a good deal for West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine”.

Speaking to the Press and Journal in September last year, Bowie also promoted the benefits of Brexit to Scotland’s fishing industry.

“We will not let our fishing industry down,” he said. “We promised we would give Great Britain and Northern Ireland its seat back at the table as an independent coastal state and we will. This Bill will deliver that.”

The sector has been hit by Brexit red-tape since the beginning of the year. Delays at the border cost firms more than £1 million a day, while the annual cost of new paperwork is thought to be around £250,000-£500,000 a year.

READ MORE: Downing Street launches Brexit taskforce amid fishing sector chaos

Seafood Scotland has said the costs associated with leaving the EU are too much for small companies.

The body’s boss, Donna Fordyce, told MPs this week: “I cannot see the new export costs being passed on to the customer and passed back to the fishermen and everybody throughout the supply chain to take their share of between £250,000-£500,000 a year.

“They don’t have that profitability to be able to do that.

“So, I think, in the medium term we will see a lot more of the smaller companies stopping trade to Europe and it may ultimately be their demise.”