SNP's Ian Blackford rages in furious Remainer rant over 'missing £655BN' from EU funding


Ian Blackford has launched into a furious rant about a missing £655billion, which would have come in EU funding before Brexit

Millie Cooke

By Millie Cooke

Published: 21/11/2023

- 12:52

Updated: 21/11/2023

- 17:06

Speaking in the House of Commons, Blackford reminded MPs that Scotland 'voted to stay in the EU'

Ian Blackford has launched into a furious rant about a missing £655billion, which would have come in EU funding before Brexit.

Speaking in a debate on Levelling Up, the former SNP Wesmintster Leader bemoaned a lack of funding from the Government, saying EU money would have "made such a difference".

Reminding MPs that "Scotland voted to stay in the EU", he claimed that his constituency was now getting "nothing" from the Conservative Government.

He said: "The National Audit Office that of the £9.5billion allocated in the first round, only £1billion had been spent".

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"Perhaps the Minister can say how much has been spent now.

"Is this not much like any other Tory slogan, meaningless in reality?

"Once again, there is nothing for Ross, Skye and Lochaber.

"We heard from the right hon Member for Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale (David Mundell) about the importance of rural areas, but there is nothing for the Portree harbour bid, which would have made such a difference.

"I invite the Secretary of State and his ministerial team to my constituency.

"We will drive around and look at all the sites of the projects that were funded by the European Union, roads, bridges, harbours, sports facilities."

He added: "That money would have come if we had stayed in the European Union, as Scotland voted to do.

"We are missing out on €750billion that the EU was investing in regeneration, and once again we are getting nothing—zip—from this Tory Government."

Responding, MP Jacob Young said Blackford "was wrong", adding: "I shall write to him following the statement on exactly how much UK shared prosperity funding his area has received, and I hope that when I do, he will come back to the Chamber to update the House on the facts of the matter.

"He asked how much money has been spent since the National Audit Office released the figures in March: £1.5billion has been spent since then, but I would be delighted to come up and visit the humble crofter’s constituency."

Last week, the SNP published a plan outlining their vision for an independent Scotland in the EU, published as part of their Building a New Scotland report series.

The Scottish Government said it would use a "tried and tested" route to EU membership, relying on Article 49.


Speaking ahead of the report's publication, the SNP's Constitution secretary Angus Robertson dismissed Brexit as "disastrous", calling instead for "an alternative direction for Scotland which will detail our shared European values".

Robertson said: "Independent countries like Scotland are wealthier and fairer than the UK, so with all our resources and talents why not Scotland?

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