From the SNP Media Unit:
The SNP has said independence is the only way to regain the full benefits of Scotland’s EU membership – as UK consumers and businesses are hit with more charges as a result of Boris Johnson’s hard Brexit deal.
Mastercard has said it will increase fees more than fivefold, when UK shoppers and businesses use a debit or credit card to buy from EU-based companies. The ‘interchange fee’ is capped by the EU for Member States but the cap no longer applies to the UK following Brexit – leading to higher costs for UK consumers. Mastercard has said it will increase the charge for online credit card payments from 0.3% to 1.5%, and increase the fee for debit cards from 0.2% to 1.15%.
It follows the news that UK shoppers are also being hit with huge charges for VAT, customs duties and delivery when buying from EU countries. Previously products could move freely between the UK and other EU member states. Now, Tory Brexit rules mean UK customers are being charged import VAT of 20%, customs duties of up to 25%, and new Brexit courier ‘handling fees’ for deliveries – with Royal Mail charging £8, DHL charging 2.5% or a minimum of £11, and TNT adding £4.31 to all shipments. The BBC reported one customer buying a jacket at £200 had to pay £82 in extra fees from courier UPS.
Commenting, SNP Consumer Affairs spokesperson Patricia Gibson MP said:
“Boris Johnson’s extreme Brexit deal has been a disaster for the UK. With every day that goes by, we are seeing mounting costs, red tape and long-term damage to our economy.
“These reports show UK consumers and businesses will be hit hard by huge charges when they make purchases, which could include everyday products, flights, hotels, car rentals and other transactions that could leave millions of people in the UK worse off.
“Scotland didn’t vote for Brexit but we are being made to pay a devastating price against our will. This Tory Brexit deal must be the worst trade deal in history – imposing new barriers to trade, added costs and bureaucracy for people and businesses across the UK.
“The only way to protect Scotland’s place in Europe and regain the full benefits of EU membership is to become an independent country. People in Scotland have the right to determine our own future and it is essential that choice is ours to make.”
‘Mastercard to increase fees for UK purchases from EU’ – https://www.ft.com/content/39f553a0-00c5-48ad-a8ee-0b9fd75554b0
‘Brexit: I was asked to pay an extra £82 for my £200 coat’ – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-55734277
‘Post-Brexit shoppers pay a third extra to get hold of EU goods’ – https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/post-brexit-shoppers-pay-a-third-extra-to-get-hold-of-eu-goods-qkrdxvkx3
‘Retailers could burn goods stuck in EU’ – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-55757931
‘Brexit: Paperwork ‘horror’ sparks anger from hauliers’ – https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-kent-55723270