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Scottish independence: Economy to take £11bn hit, study finds: ‘Dramatically poorer’ | United Kingdom | News UK News

Amid the pandemic, Ms Sturgeon pushed ahead with her government’s bid to take Scotland out of the UK. The Prime Minister said last year that his Scottish National Party (SNP) would go ahead with introducing legislation so that a referendum on Scottish independence could be held by 2023 , COVID-19 permitting. His promise to hold a second public vote on the issue came after Scots rejected the break with the UK in the 2014 referendum.

This week, the leader of the SNP in Westminster, Ian Blackford, suggested there could be a delay in a second referendum – Indyref2 – due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

However, Ms Sturgeon doubled down on her intention to hold another vote as she was interviewed on LBC this week.

The SNP leader said: ‘My plans and my way of thinking have not changed.

Despite the Scottish government’s bold rhetoric on independence, great concerns remain about the economic devastation that could be unleashed on Scotland if it withdrew from the Union.

A damning assessment of Scotland’s finances published in February last year predicted that independence could wipe £11billion from the country’s economy.

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The stark report from the London School of Economics (LSE) and the City University of Hong Kong revealed how Scotland could remain “significantly poorer”.

According to LSE’s Center for Economic Performance, impacts on Scotland’s trade with the UK and EU would reduce its per capita income by 6.3% to 8.7%.

The study authors said this equated to a loss of between £2,000 and £2,800 per person per year.

This means Scotland – a nation of around 5.5million people – could hemorrhage between £11bn and £15.4bn from its economy each year.

Hanwei Huang, assistant professor at the City University of Hong Kong, gave his assessment of the forecast for independent Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon argued that Scotland’s economy would be stronger if the country was accepted back into the 27-nation bloc as an independent nation.

However, the report’s authors claimed that being part of the EU would not save Scotland’s independent economy.

Thomas Sampson, associate professor of economics at LSE, said: “We find that the costs of independence to the Scottish economy are likely to be two to three times the costs of Brexit.

“Furthermore, joining the EU after independence would do little to mitigate these costs.”

The expert added that “in the short term” this would “probably lead to greater economic losses than maintaining a common economic market with the rest of the UK”.

Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish Government’s economics secretary, claimed at the time that the Scottish economy would see the benefits of independence if given time.

She said: “With our economic resources and advantages, control of economic policy and EU membership, Scotland would be very well placed to develop the economy.”

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This notice was published: 2022-03-13 07:04:00

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