e. Yes Campaign in Thurso

Thurso and District Branch of the SNP are delighted to bring the Yes Campaign for Scotland’s Independence to Thurso. The advertising sign at the ‘Dammies’ is the start of the campaign in Thurso that the SNP local branch will be spearheading as part of the Yes Campaign.

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Although it is fine for a poster to read ‘Yes’, why should you vote yes?

There is of course the fundamental reasons, that Scotland should have the ability to make its own decisions and policies in relation to the wider political community. A nice idea perhaps, but surely we’re too small? No.

Today in the world there are about 200 independent nations, Scotland’s population places us at the mid-point among these countries, 50% bigger than us and 50% smaller

Furthermore, of the 10 nations that joined the EU in 2004, most becoming independent after 1990, Scotland is bigger than 6 of them and all of them have a seat at the top table, this is a right Scotland should enjoy too, if the people of Scotland will be in favour of a place in the EU.

Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Finland, all have a population similar or smaller than Scotland’s, yet are wealthier than the UK, Scotland also has similar potential.

Are there economic benefits of an independent Scotland? Yes.

Post independence Scotland can take forward policies designed for Scotland. Independence will mean that those who desire a prosperous Scotland would be able to make policies to do so, that is the people who live in Scotland.

The current Scottish Government has calculated that a decrease of just 3% in the corporation tax rate in Scotland will generate as many as 27,000 jobs. Scotland as we are now does not have the power to do this. The Labour party has also argued for a VAT reduction, a policy designed to help the Scottish economy, yet this is just another policy that currently Scotland cannot implement.

Moreover, the former head of Scottish Enterprise has stated, ‘During my time at Scottish Enterprise our numbers about Scotland’s finances came down in favour of financial independence. Independence could focus the minds of politicians to create the conditions for economic growth, which would translate to better jobs, higher wages and stronger communities’. Independence would give us the ability to create a better economy suited for Scotland.

An independent Scotland will have its own Treasury and Department of Foreign Affairs. Instead of paying for these services to be based in London, they will be in Scotland, creating more jobs and boosting the economy. Initial costs of setting up these departments would be offset by the saving that would be made, there would be an annual saving of £250 million for no longer contributing to the UK’s nuclear weapons and £50 million saving for no longer paying for Lords and Politicians in Westminster.

But can Scotland really afford independence? Yes.

It is true what the bloc opposed to independence says, that spending in Scotland is much higher than the rest of the UK, but it is also true that tax revenues generated by Scotland are much higher too. Scotland has about 8.4% of the UK population and gets 9.3% of UK spending, however Scotland generates 9.6% of UK tax revenues, Scotland is by no means subsidised. We also generate over £1,000 more tax per person than the average across the UK and over the last 6 Years Scotland’s financial position was stronger than the UK as a whole. Over the last 30 years Scotland has had a surplus of £19 billion.

Would Scotland be able to deal with the high level of debt? Yes.

Figures from January 2012 by City firm M&G Investments show that Scotland’s debt percentage is smaller than the UK’s, the report also commented that Scotland’s starting point looks better than that of the UK as a whole.

I hope by this that some of the fears of independence are overcome and the beginning of a Yes vote may be sparked.

More information can be found at www.YesScotland.net, www.snp.org

Andrew Smith
Thurso and District Branch SNP
Press Officer
Yes Campaign Volunteer

 

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