Herald predicts full EU membership two to three years early

The Herald’s Graham Avery thinks 3 to 4 years and carefully inserts the qualification ‘fully’. In January 2014, he said 18 months: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-25965703

Fabian Zuleeg, chief executive of the European Policy Centre think tank in Brussels, in May 2021 said:

We are talking here about a part of the United Kingdom that, also because of Brexit, seeks independence and wants to belong to the EU value community,” Zuleeg said. “And in this respect, I think the mood on the EU side is rather positive. He suggested an independent Scotland might be able to conclude membership negotiations in two to three years, similar to Finland’s accession process in the mid-1990s.


The average is just under 5 years: https://ukandeu.ac.uk/explainers/how-new-member-states-join-the-eu-all-you-need-to-know/

Spain took 10 years: https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/documents-publications/library/library-blog/posts/the-accession-of-portugal-and-spain-to-the-european-union/

With regard to that ‘fully’, Finland joined in 1995 but did not join the Euro until 1999 and did not join the Schengen area (border-free) until 2001, six years after.



18 thoughts on “Herald predicts full EU membership two to three years early

  1. This makes a change from the “Project Fear” lies that Scotland would never be allowed to join the EU and, if we were allowed to, we would be ‘at the back of the queue’, with dire mentions that we would have to wait until the applications by Turkiye and others had been dealt with, and Turkiye had been in the queue for 20 years.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. Tis Scotland,s Destiny to be a progressive outward looking friendly
    And cooperative member of The EU
    Should you believe otherwise emigrate to England ” Land of despair & Infamy “


  3. If rejoining the EU can be shown to be a certainty, an independent Scotland is in the bag. The ScotGov were though talking about holding a referendum on whether Scotland should rejoin the EU. Given the resounding majority who voted remain in 2016 in Scotland, I’m not sure it’s necessary to hold a referendum on the matter it would just stall things and that would be a waste of time and money.
    Let’s get independence done and rejoin the EU pronto as well. Otherwise, be subsumed into nationalist, narrow, insular, backward dangerous, corrupt greater England and face a most terrible and uncertain future.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ‘I’m not sure it’s necessary to hold a referendum on the matter ..’

      A key outcome of gaining independence is gaining agency, the
      power to decide and act in ways that accord with the democratic will of voters in Scotland. I find problematic the notion of pre-committing now an independent Scotland to EU membership and doing so to a degree that would be viewed as sufficient to provide (this alluring goal of) ‘certainty’.

      This is problematic IMHO because it would be: (i) in advance of knowing the membership terms that would be offered by the EU; (ii) in advance of setting the terms under which the dissolution of the UK is achieved – bound to be trade-offs to consider; (iii) without (yet) a Scottish government with a mandate to bind Scotland to EU membership; and (iv) without a pre-legislative or confirmatory or other democratic event which has endorsed anything.

      Several other thoughts come to mind: (i) the potential value of concluding ‘in principle’ agreements/statements with third parties such as the EU – but unlikely to be easy given the norms of international diplomacy; (ii) the value in the concept of ‘transitional arrangements’ when approaching new, complex and inevitably uncertain arrangements for the early years post independence; and (iii) whatever we individually or collectively we in Scotland may favour for our country immediately upon independence, avoiding in an indy2 debate situations where we are seen to rely on – are arguing for – factors that are wholly in the gift of others (cf. the ‘currency union’ debate in 2014).

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Agree, the terms of agreement would need to be discussed agreed on and implemented according to the will of the people of Scotland. I’m just desperate for Scotland to be out of the UK before it’s too late more than anything and I’m absolutely livid that Scotland, having had allies with countries like France in the past, has been dragged out of the EU against the will of the majority of the people, it was and is so undemocratic and dangerous for Scotland. It is something that the BritNats will use during an indy ref campaign, I’m sure they have plans afoot already in how they will tackle it and which tactics they will use against Scotland and the democratic will of the people of Scotland.


  4. I am happy being IN (full EU member) or OUT (Norway Option).
    Both have pluses and minus’s.

    In either state, Scotland would be a sovereign country, which it cannot be as a “territory” of the UK.

    In either state, Scotland could join or not join NATO. As a “territory” of the UK it does as told.

    In either state, Scotland could be a Republic (my choice) or remain with the Anglo-Hanoverian monarchy. As a “territory” of the UK it has a monarch foisted upon it–relevant historic titles or not!
    In either state, Scotland would exorcise its own democratic choices, for good or bad. As a “territory” of the UK it must accept whatever England picks.

    In either state, Scotland would have a free and independent media. As a “territory” of the UK, it has a colonial Anglo-centric media thrust down its throat.

    And so on………………………………………….

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I completely agree with the principle that is implied in what gavinochiltree writes.

      On the particular matters raised and on others, it’s about WHO CHOOSES for Scotland. In future, is it to be a majority of people who live, work and pay their taxes in Scotland? Or is it forever to be those in a much larger neighbour that time after time – for c.70 years, from the mid 1950s onwards – have made political choices that differ significantly from ones a majority in Scotland make.

      Time after time England selects the Tory Party to govern over us. England gave UKIP its influence. England gave its support to a party and political philosophy determined to have an EU referendum. England’s majority vote led to Brexit. The party selected by England to govern over us then took us out of the European single market and customs union. A majority in England in 2019, including those identified as ‘traditional Labour’ voters (i.e. presumably the kind of folk the Labour Party wishes Scots to be in comradely solidarity with!), decided that a Tory Party led by Boris Johnson was the best choice to make for the government of their country.

      What England wants, the whole of the UK gets: what comes about as a result of England’s choices, Scotland has to thole. How is this under any conceivable logic being ‘better together’?

      Liked by 4 people

      1. I would only correct your excellent synopsis by highlighting UKIP and indeed BP as Tory etc creations, they did not rise as a result of public demand but were created to generate it. The Tories are long past waiting a convenient enemy to come along, they can invent one and direct it’s cannon-fire as it chooses, all the while pleading innocence ? Enter stage right failed Tory candidate Nigel Farage…

        Able to diverge from official Tory official policy with a failed Tory candidate “in charge” of a made up party was a no lose investment, Farage became the face of resurgent English nationalism with a Union flag stuck on, if it all went horribly wrong he could always be dumped with no damage to the Tories…

        Liked by 1 person

  5. All the good aspects of being part of EUROPE



  6. The whole of the UK will have to be back in the EU or it will be an absolute disaster. Catastrophic. The Tories mess and shambles. Still not even out yet. Just an illusion. The problems piling up. The economy tanking. The younger people want to be back in the EU. That will decide it. Already the majority believe Brexit is an absolute disaster.

    Dick gone. Next Johnston, Then the rest of the Tories.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Slightly OT – I was watching a talk earlier by Alain Menon on ‘what have we learned from Brexit’, a man I’ve long held in high regard for his perspective – Yet when he portrayed the issue of a trade border for Scotland as an EU member as a killer for hopes of Independence, I was bluntly stunned at the myopia.

    He could not grasp the distinction between yet another trade border for England vice opening 27 for Scottish trade as not being a deal breaker for the vast majority of Scots, or that the malevolence of a Tory elite in London should not have already been the final straw for Scots, before “Partygate” entered the narrative.

    The multiple problems associated with London governance up to and including the recent energy crisis are down to an Imperial perspective akin to Roman Emperors, lately portrayed with a Churchillian profile and a damned awful impersonation.

    Endearing as that may be to dear ole England, there was a reason Hadrian built his wall where it remains, we’re obstinate bastards with a touch less “every man for himself” in our makeup, it was a pity Alain with his Oxford glasses couldn’t see that.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The ‘border issue’ is clearly one that will receive a lot of attention: it is already a favoured ‘scare’ by Unionist/”better together’ activists.

      I’m often struck by how much coverage of border and related trade issues implies the certainty of a binary outcome of any change – either no impact on trade flows or a huge, devastating impact.

      The reality is that a negative effect of a change may be a relatively small percentage downturn. This may prove permanent or may gradually reduce – adjust – over time. It may affect different forms of trade to differing degrees. It may affect different forms of trade going in different directions to different degrees. And/or for individual firms/sectors any downturn may be mitigated/overturned by entering different export markets or by domestic firms taking market share in home markets from now less competitive ‘foreign’ rivals.

      Often the implication is of a negative impact in only one direction – of course from Scotland into England. And this leads to the further implication that there would be little or no collective incentive among trading stakeholders on both sides of the border to achieve mitigations.

      But solutions are at hand! Because the UK government recognises the challenges facing UK trade due to post Brexit border arrangements, we know that the Westminster government is committed to having the ‘MOST EFFECTIVE BORDER IN THE WORLD’. (my emphasis)

      See: https://www.export.org.uk/news/544587/UK-outlines-plans-for-most-effective-border-in-the-world-by-2025.htm

      I’m sure a nation state with the process expertise, the technological capability and the capacity to establish the ”MOST EFFECTIVE BORDER IN THE WORLD’ in just a few years time will be able easily to ensure comparable world class effectiveness at the land border with a co-operative, friendly neighbouring nation state!

      Unless of course it prefers to behave as a hostile neighbour that deliberately – and perversely – specifically excludes its northern land border from what it has established everywhere else, namely the ”MOST EFFECTIVE BORDER IN THE WORLD’?

      Of course might it say one thing now and do something quite different later?

      Liked by 3 people

      1. The UQ was always going to be the loser in this bureaucratic paper chase, but Scotland has the “the need us for than we need them” ace up it’s sleeve without reference to a single mercedes-benz, basics… Despite Ireland’s historic woes over the humble potato, are rUK really going to deprive the giant crisp factories with power, gas, and potatoes ?
        I suggest not, even if the ‘MOST EFFECTIVE BORDER IN THE WORLD’ has not actually appeared before Indy, it sure as hell will on the day after….


    2. Spot on Bob, borders are everywhere and if as you say Scotland becomes the 28th European border with England so what. Also between getting a Yes vote and being independent they will have at least two years to get ready.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. When the UK fully joined the EU I remember my dad was delighted, he saw how it would help keep the far right in London at WM, in check. He’d been in the army in Malayia, he saw how cruel and brutal the elite prvaite schooled high ranking officers were towards the people of Malayia, for eg forcing a heavily pregnant woman to walk through the jungle for miles etc. ( I’m sure he witnessed much cruelty) He knew the EU would keep the far right from taking the reins in the UK, and now, that’s what we have. Carte blanche to do what they like the Tories extremists are running the UK and it’s really scary. The Tory free loaders will show no mercy to Scotland in their fight to keep the country shackled and to keep taking Scottish resources. Brexit is a gift to them, Scotland needs away, and in the EU pronto.


    Liked by 2 people

  9. OT – The BBC in Scotland/Scotland Office unattributed “Low-income families ‘let down’ by payment scheme” promotion piece truly is a masterpiece of propaganda with Connor Gillies performing the obligatory “Analysis by” to create some veneer of respectability – How far he has fallen from the 2020 achievement as Young Journalist of the Year at the Fort, to Journalist of the Smear award in 2022 at the silent Fart.

    This concoction clearly intends those forced to execute speedy assistance, the SG and Forbes, to take blame rather than those who caused this ludicrous and unnecessary “energy crisis”, London Tories, allowing Sunak to re-assess the profits.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’d prefer to see Scotland join EFTA/EEA and stay there. That would give us SM membership, with its freedoms, and we could have trade deals with rUK and the EU. We would control our fisheries as Norway does theirs.

    We would not be in the CU but we don’t need to be, and we would obviously have no obligation to join the Euro, and thus be able to enjoy the undoubted benefits of having our own currency.

    If you don’t know what these benefits are, just ask WM. The UK Government can instruct the BoE to create money and pay it into a their account. This is how they have financed the pandemic (and feathered their own nests at the same time.) If they had had to borrow in another currency like the Euro, that would have been real debt. Ask Greece about that. A country that borrows in it’s own currency is always able to redeem that debt,by having its reserve bank create money if necessary.

    In adition if we retain the CTA, that allows people from all parts of the British Isles to travel and work anywhere in the British Isles without restriction as they do now.


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