Plaid Cymru: “No immediate prospect” of independent Wales re-joining the EU

Plaid are pro-EU but Wales voted to leave in 2016.

The Welsh nationalist Plaid Cymru party has said that, if Wales becomes independent, there is “no immeditate prospect” of it re-joining the European Union.

The party has commissioned a report laying out its plan for independence if it wins next year’s Welsh Parliament elections.

The report says “We are firmly of the view that the long-term destiny of an independent Wales should be as a full member of the European Union.”

“Given the Brexit vote in 2016, and its aftermath, there is no immediate prospect of that. However, we have made recommendations on how Wales should forge closer relations with the European Union, both in the run-up to achieving independence and afterwards.”

Plaid Cymru supported Remain in the referendum and then called for a second referendum to be held after any Brexit deal had been negotiated.

But Wales voted by 52% to 48% to leave the European Union in 2016 – a similar percentage to the UK as awhole.

On the other hand, Scotland voted to remain in the EU – and the Scottish government has said it would try and rejoin as soon as possible if it was to leave the United Kingdom.

On its plans for independence, the report proposes that the government set up a commission to provide “objective” information.

This would be followed by an exploratory non-binding referendum where people in Wales can say what kind of independence they would like.

This would be followed by a binding referendum with this form of independence on the ballot against staying in the UK – similar to the 2014 Scottish referendum.

Currently, 32% of Welsh people say they would vote for independence – far higher than in previous years.

Welsh parliament elections will take place in May 2021. Their government is currently Labour but the elections have been described as a three horse race between Labour, the Conservatives and Plaid Cymru.

Joe Lo is a co-editor of Left Foot Forward

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