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CBI ‘not convinced’ on case for Scottish independence


The Confederation of British Industry has said breaking up the UK could be costly and could create significant economic dislocation.

Speaking at the CBI Scotland annual dinner last night, new CBI president Sir Mike Rake said the campaign for an independent Scotland had not properly answered a number of issues raised by the Treasury’s recent analysis of the cost of Scottish independence, including how cross border tax arrangements, shared regulatory and legal systems and a shared currency would work.

Rake said: “The CBI is not convinced of the economic case for independence and has asked some important questions of the Scottish Government. These need to be clearly answered so that the Scottish electorate can make their decision with full knowledge of the potential business and economic implications of independence.”

Rake also said the question of Scotland’s place in Europe remained unclear.

Rake said: “What would be the implications of independence on our unified labour market, integrated infrastructure and our catalogue of well-honed business arrangements, and our position in the European Union?  That’s why it is so important for the Scottish Government to fully respond and we look forward to the publication this autumn of the independence white paper.”


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There are 13 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. If independence comes, I wonder how soon the English and Welsh will question why so many Scots are living in England and Wales “taking our jobs and using our services”?


  2. Always a one dimensional analysis of the proposal for an Independent Scotland – money, money, money.
    Important though it may be, there is more to life than money. Self respect for a start. I am fed up with Great Britain being referred to as England. This is not only an insult to Scotland but Wales as well.
    After 300 years of notional integration it is clear that there is still a wide cultural divide between the 3 nations within GB. That being so it is about time that the Act of Union was revisited. We have passed the time when armies (other than football armies) roved around the country creating havoc.
    Time for a review of the relationships within GB, not all of which are economic – or football related.

  3. “Rake also said the question of Scotland’s place in Europe remained unclear.”

    Is the UK’s place in Europe crystal clear?

    “The Confederation of British Industry has said breaking up the UK could be costly and could create significant economic dislocation.”

    One ponders that the UK’s continued membership of the EU, or equally its withdrawal from membership also harbour costs and/or economic dislocation.

    Seems to me the many questions that surround Scotland’s future can be, and are, matched with the very same questions that apply to the UK.

    Maybe the reports from the G20, that we are a small island that nobody listens to … send us an important message.

  4. @Phil – so why not vice versa. Always a one dimensional analysis – money, money, money.
    The Scots gave you and managed your Empire – about time there was a degree of gratitude.
    I appreciate it may have been said tongue in cheek but it does perpetuate a sandpaper relationship.

  5. I get so tired hearing about all these tin pot little countries getting jingoistic and nationalistic.
    Latvia – population 2.3 million, Lithuania Population 3.4 million. Estonia Population 1.3million Slovenia Population 2 million and so forth.

    All making a noise and more trouble than they are worth.

    Big blocks make sense. Let’s go back to the old Greater Russia; at least the satellites would be kept in order and of course a fully integrated United States of Europe.

    It is the small countries that create the problems and modern wars. Bosnia, the Middle East (interminably!), Chechnya, Libya etc. The big blocks – although hardly amicable at least know the dangers and disadvantages of open conflict.

  6. @Glen McKeown
    It is rather disapointing that you say the Scots gave and managed our empire. It is that attitude that is helping to destroy something that has worked for the past 300 years.

    Nationalism is an outdated and destructive concept and if the Scots vote for independence that will be a real shame, for all of the Union, including the Scots and the arguement that it doesn’t work from a monetary aspect is also flawed because we have to consider all aspects of the relationship, not just the cash!

    But for the record could you please explain how the Scottish, on their own, managed to get an empire and pass it over to the ‘hated’ English.
    It is my opinion that the Union has had its troubles over the years and there have been difficulties with this relationship but like most families we do not always get on but we are most certainly stronger together than we are apart.

  7. Anon @ 10.08
    “It is the small countries that create the problems and modern wars”
    look at England under blair!

  8. Tony Blair was born in Scotland!

  9. @ Phil
    I was born in a garage.

  10. I’m bored of nitwits like the CBI saying “oh, but it’s hard and we don’t know what will happen”. Problems can be overcome – we would be a medium sized country in European respects (ignoring the Andorras and San Marinos!) and have vast natural resources at our disposal. But what – we’re too thick to look after ourselves like every other country?

    Currently, we get a higher spend per head but we pay more in thanks to the oil. Fine, it balances out. When the oil is gone and we no longer pay our way, will we then be subsidised? Hardly, the BoJos will be all over it. The SNP has a solution – take control of our economy and fiscal levers. Better Together doesn’t, it just wants to plough on blindly it seems.

    It’s Better Together who have to answer the questions on Scotland’s future, not the ‘Yes’ campaign! The latter have a vision, the former do not.

    P.S. I’m voting ‘yes’, but will vote ‘no’ if a decent fiscal autonomy package is on the table.

  11. This is a Scottish matter not one for the rest of us.

    It may be true that the Scots were the Sergeant Majors of the British Empire to the English Officers. But Glen how is that a wonderful value proposition?

    Empires whether Russian, British, Greek, Roman, Persian etc etc are not for the benefit of those ruled but for the rulers. Ireland, your near neighbour suffered from the British Empire and I don’t notice many countries asking to be Re-Empired globally.

    If Scotland can be bothered to vote for or against independence its got not a lot to do with me.

  12. If the Scots wish to leave the Union, so be it. With Scottish and Irish blood in my family, I will be sad to see that tie cut. However, myopia and introspection often are the precursors of suspect decisions and actions.

  13. Since London is a country all on it’s own, Scotland will only be leaving the rest of the UK.
    The rest of the UK is fed up funding London.

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