UK Government ministers would be wrong to close their mind to the possibility of a flexible solution for Scotland in negotiations over Brexit, Nicola Sturgeon has said.

The First Minister said Scotland must be part of discussions taking place over special arrangements for different sectors or parts of the UK.

Her view was echoed by Scotland's Brexit minister Mike Russell, who said it would make "no logical, political or economic sense" for the UK Government not to consider a special deal for Scotland.

The Scottish Government has said it will bring forward specific proposals for a so-called flexible Brexit that would keep Scotland in the single market, even if the rest of the UK was not part of the trading agreement, in the next few weeks.

Opening the annual National Economic Forum in Edinburgh, Ms Sturgeon said her Government does not underestimate the potential challenges that poses.

But she continued: "The UK and the European Union is entering unprecedented territory. These are times that have never been planned for.

"There are no rules for what happens now beyond the few lines of text in Article 50 which are being poured over, and interpreted and over-interpreted.

"We are working with a blank sheet of paper, and there are many downsides to working with a blank sheet of paper - but one of the upsides is that it gives you the opportunity to write what you want on that sheet of paper.

"So with creativity, innovation and a political will, things that would have perhaps before this vote have appeared unpractical or unthinkable, I think we should be prepared to look at with an open mind."

Ms Sturgeon added: "We're already hearing discussion and debate about the possibility of special arrangements for different parts of the UK.

"The necessity, in my view, for special arrangements for Northern Ireland to protect the peace process and avoid a hard border between North and South. We're hearing similar discussions about Gibraltar, as well as similar discussions about particular economic sectors - like car manufacturing and financial services.

"So there is already a discussion about flexibility, and I think it is important that Scotland is part of that discussion. It would be wrong, and not credible, for the UK Government to consider flexible solutions for other areas or sectors but close their mind for that in Scotland."

On Monday, Ms Sturgeon and Mr Russell attended what she later described as a "deeply frustrating" Brexit summit in Downing Street between Prime Minister Theresa May and devolved leaders.

Updating MSPs at Holyrood, Mr Russell said: "Monday made it clearer than ever that there is at present no coherent UK plan. But there has to be a Scottish plan, and ideally that should be one that is good for the UK too."

He added: "If it is possible for the UK Government to consider differentiation for the City of London, if it is possible for the UK Government to consider differentiation for the Japanese car factories in the north east of England, why would it not be possible for them to consider differentiation for Scotland? It makes no logical, political or economic sense."

Mr Russell accused Mrs May of "hypocrisy" over her leaked comments to Goldman Sachs bankers made before the EU referendum warning that companies would leave if voters chose Brexit.

He added that a consultation launched last week would "ensure that the draft Referendum Bill is to be ready for introduction should it be, in the opinion of the Government, the right way to proceed".

Conservative MSP Adam Tomkins accused the Scottish Government of "wasting everybody's time" with the push for a new independence referendum.

He said: "We've already answered this question, we said no, and the SNP signed an agreement that they would abide by and respect the answer, so why have they ratted on that agreement?"

Mr Russell said his party is trying to answer the "serious existential threat to Scotland in the Brexit process".

Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald called for details on the Scottish Government proposals to be released more quickly.

He said: "If membership of the single market is the red line for the Scottish Government, what does he propose in relation to the customs union, to agriculture and fisheries and to trade with third parties, all of which lie within the European Union but lie out with the single market?"

Mr Russell said the Scottish Government is looking at options and is prepared to work with other parties.