Visit to Brussels to meet with EU counterparts

Today I travelled to Brussels to meet with my counterpart in the Flemish Parliament, Jan Peumans MP and with the President of the Belgian House of Representatives, Siegfried Bracke MP.

During my first European visit as Presiding Officer, I hope to discuss a range of key issues including parliamentary reform and the work of committees in holding the Government to account.

As we embark on our fifth session, with a range of new powers coming to Holyrood, it is important to look at the lessons we can learn from others about effective parliamentary scrutiny.

The Scottish Parliament has a history of engagement with the Flemish Parliament and so I was delighted to accept their invitation to visit Brussels and continue that collaboration.

I hope that this visit will further strengthen the bond between our parliaments and will allow us to learn from each other’s valuable experiences across a number of key areas.