Scotland’s independent think tank
Scotland’s independent think tank


Reform Scotland encourages more detail but welcomes direction of travel

Reform Scotland, the independent non-party think tank, has welcomed the Scottish Government’s migration policy paper, which has been released today and which is aligned with the think tank’s previous recommendation that Scotland should be removed from any UK immigration cap.

The Scottish Government’s central proposal is for a Scottish Visa to work within a new UK post-Brexit immigration framework, encouraging more migration to Scotland.

Reform Scotland has welcomed this in principle due to Scotland’s unique demographic challenge. Scotland’s working age population is projected to stall by 2043; the UK’s is not. Scotland’s disproportionate problem in the working-age population projections makes it critical and urgent that Scotland’s economy attracts more people.

Reform Scotland will be publishing its own proposals in this area over the next few months, following its paper of June 2018 – “Taking Scotland out of the immigration target”.

Commenting, Chris Deerin, Director of Reform Scotland, said:

“There is much work to be done before a bespoke Scottish immigration system can become a reality. But it is clear that change, in the shape of a greater role for the Scottish Government in managing migration, is needed. Both the Scottish and UK Governments must work together in a constructive way once the UK has left the European Union.

“We welcome this intervention by the Scottish Government. It is a step in the right direction and, even if the specific system proposed does not come to fruition, it should be taken seriously by the UK Government and treated as the starting point for a conversation and agreement.

“Scotland needs more people. And if the UK intends to reduce immigration post-Brexit, Scotland needs a mechanism for managing and meeting its own specific needs. Reform Scotland will continue to contribute in detail to this debate in due course.”



  1. Reform Scotland’s previous paper in this area – Taking Scotland out of the immigration target – can be read here.
  2. Reform Scotland is an independent, non-party think tank that aims to set out a better way to deliver increased economic prosperity and more effective public services based on the traditional Scottish principles of limited government, diversity and personal responsibility. Further information is available at
  3. Media: for more information contact Message Matters (Andy Maciver, [email protected], 07855 261 244)