Our Place in the World

External Affairs

With international relations largely reserved to Westminster, the Scottish Parliament has limited opportunities to make Scotland’s voice heard on the world stage. But that does not mean we do not have a role to play, now as a devolved power or in the future as an independent country. The Scottish Greens will support the Scottish Government to establish and develop institutions and to engage with the global community to promote sustainable solutions, human rights, and peace, and enhance our advocacy for oppressed peoples and for peace and justice.

Green Impact

Scottish Green achievements in the last 5 years include:

  • Forced the Scottish Qualifications Authority to undertake a review of its international activities, resulting in the withdrawal from six countries with serious human rights concerns, including Saudi Arabia
  • Coordinated a letter signed by 50 European politicians stating an independent Scotland would be welcome in the EU
  • Secured new requirements for Scottish public bodies to conduct human rights checks on companies, including arms companies, prior to funding them

BUILD SCOTLAND’S REPRESENTATION IN EUROPE AND THE WORLD

The Scottish Greens want to see Scotland’s interests and its mission to support peace and the transition to a net-zero economy better represented around the world. This is all the more urgent with Brexit reducing our influence, and the UK government’s continued prioritisation of narrow economic aims that are of limited value to Scotland. The Scottish Government has established an existing network of offices in Beijing, Berlin, Brussels, Dublin, London, Ottawa, Paris and Washington DC. The Scottish Greens will expand these hubs to include Warsaw, Oslo, San Francisco, Atlanta, Delhi, São Paulo, Nairobi and Tokyo.

PLAY AN ACTIVE ROLE IN THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY

We oppose the UK Government’s abandonment of its commitment on international development funding, and will urgently make the case for restoring this. Even without being a fully independent state, as a nation with devolved powers Scotland can take a more active role in the international community. To build our influence, contribute to global efforts to address the pandemic, and forward the transition to a net-zero economy, the Scottish Greens will seek for Scotland:

  • Associated Member Status of the World Health Organisation.
  • Associate membership of the Nordic Council.
  • Observer status of the Arctic Council.

SUPPORT GLOBAL EFFORTS TO ROLL OUT THE COVID VACCINE TO ALL

There will be no end to the Covid-19 pandemic until the spread is under control or eliminated everywhere. Wealthier countries like the UK and Scotland should support equitable international access to vaccines by increasing their financial contribution to the COVAX initiative and sharing excess stockpiled vaccines with less wealthy countries. The UK Government should ensure vaccine manufacturers allocate vaccine supply equitably; share safety, efficacy and manufacturing data with the WHO for review; and transfer technology to international manufacturers to assist a scale up in global supply. Scotland should step up and assist global efforts to roll-out the vaccine by working with partner countries and international organisations such as the World Health Organisation, and support and contribute to the costs of vaccination in Malawi, given our historic partnership.

BE A FORCE FOR PEACE

The Scottish Greens believe in a world free of nuclear weapons.

We will:

END SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT FINANCIAL SUPPORT TO THE ARMS INDUSTRY

Over the last 15 years, the Scottish Government has given over £31 million in enterprise funding to companies involved with the arms trade, as well as free business advice and account management services. The corporations supported in this way include major international arms dealers like Raytheon, Leonardo, Thales, and BAE Systems, all of which have made billions in arms sales every year and are amongst the 10 largest arms companies in the world. Products made by Leonardo and Raytheon have been linked to alleged war crimes committed by Turkey and Saudi Arabia, respectively, having been used in bombing campaigns that have killed civilians.

The Scottish Greens believe public funding and support to companies involved in the arms trade is morally wrong and economically unjustified. We will end all Scottish Government support for arms dealers.

STAND UP FOR OPPRESSED PEOPLE

In areas where the Scottish Government already engages in international affairs, such as participation in international organisations or the network of trade offices, we can play our part to stand up for the rights of oppressed people.

The Scottish Greens will:

Downloads

Downloads of our manifesto in PDF, Easy Read, large print, and plain text, and audio formats are available here: https://greens.scot/ourfuture/downloads

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