Almost (but not quite) beyond belief. The arch unionist Murdo Fraser MSP spills the beans on why Westminster is desperate not to lose Scotland. Please share and, if you can bear it, watch and listen to Mr Fraser. https://newsnet.scot
"Scotland pays University fees through general taxation. The downside of this is that universities are funded at a lower level. Despite this, they have managed to maintain a high ranking internationally. Edinburgh is consistently in the world top 20 in the QS ranking system. Glasgow and St Andrews are also in the world top 100 and several other Scottish Universities feature in the top 500. The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland is fifth in the world, according to this widely-respected ranking. The UK Government is now creating additional challenges for Scottish universities with its hard Brexit. In the past, they have been able to attract funding from the EU – but now they look set to lose millions and many prestigious research opportunities through Brexit." https://www.believeinscotland.org
"England imports most of its energy from Scotland. But Scots don’t benefit from that – they are charged more in energy bills than the rest of the UK. If an independent Scotland had replicated Norway’s policy of creating a sovereign wealth fund, it would now be, per capita, the wealthiest country in the world. It could use its sovereign wealth fund to protect consumers from the energy crisis and invest in a meaningful way in a just transition." https://www.businessforscotland.com
"Scotland has the largest share of UK exports of food and drink products – with the industry in Scotland making up [nearly?] one-third of total exports out of the UK – making the sector worth £5.7billion. A report from the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) shows Scotland’s food and drink sector has shown significant growth and is recovering from the impacts of the pandemic. FDF has said Scotland’s industry continues to ‘punch above its weight’." https://talkingupscotlandtwo.com
We all know that electricity prices will rise massively. This will have a disproportionate effect on older people like me, and other less well off individuals, eg the unemployed and the low waged. But it will also have an effect on the economy due to higher utility costs for businesses. It is estimated that rises in costs of over 100% will not be uncommon.
We call on Government to take active steps now to protect the most vulnerable in our society, and the economy in general, by tackling the causes of these rises at source. Government has the power to cap prices, by using the money that we, the taxpayers give them. They need to focus on the health and welfare of the 99% of people who will be hardest hit by these rises-the older age group, the low waged, the more vulnerable, the housebound. Government exists to act on behalf of those who elect them. We cannot continue to live in conditions where people have to chose between heating and eating, or are being asked to give up things that the better off can take for granted. The more of us who make our voices heard on this subject, the more likely that Parliament will have to take action.
"The UK Government has failed to put in place any market incentives to build pumped storage in Scotland. There are two projects near Loch Ness which have been granted permission by the Scottish Government, which would more than double the entire UK’s pumped storage capacity. A third, at Loch Awe is at the proposal stage. But developers have not yet started work on any of these. For a business to embark on a big infrastructure project like this, which will take many years to build and use, usually requires Government incentives. The UK Government is coming under pressure to provide this – but an independent Scotland could have done it years ago, when Norway started its projects." https://www.businessforscotland.com
"At the moment that food security becomes an issue of massive importance, Scotland’s agricultural production is set to fall. Until an independent Scotland returns to the EU and can once again participate in the CAP, it will have to dance to Westminster’s tune, unable to finance its food production goals, set its own immigration policy, or build on its successful food export sector." https://www.businessforscotland.com
"Scotland has a future in the old energies for a while yet but we are increasingly at the forefront of renewables. The transition takes value and skills from older North Sea industries to contribute to building our new energy industries. With over 50 years experience in offshore oil and gas Scotland is well placed to make this important transition." https://newsnet.scot
Against a background of the CEO of Babcock International, ludicrously misquoted by the unionist media, allegedly suggesting that they would pull out of Rosyth "if not made welcome" in an independent Scotland this article provides a dose of realism. For example:
"Rosyth has a secure future in an independent Scotland. It is a vital asset where long term employment opportunities have a much brighter future than the constant insecurity of being a northern outpost of the UK solely dependent on uncertain defence contracts. Rosyth can become a diversified marine centre of excellence in an independent Scotland and has the potential to expand to meet Scotland’s North Sea marine objectives." https://newsnet.scot
"David McWilliams is an economist, author, journalist, documentary-maker and broadcaster. He is Adjunct Professor of Global Economics at the School of Business Trinity College Dublin. David is ranked 10th most influential economist in the world....
Ireland is often held up as an example of a successful small economy and in this episode, we look at how and why Ireland has become an undeniably successful small nation." https://www.youtube.com
"As the UK abandons regulation, there is little the Scottish Parliament can currently do to protect it. Only with independence can Scotland set high standards to protect the environment." https://www.businessforscotland.com
"The question is not so much whether occupational pensions and private pension assets are protected as it would be fair to say that this is a certainty. The question, thus, is: how are they going to be protected? What would be the arrangement or policies put in place by the Scottish Government that would ensure this protection? It is likely that a deal would be reached in which the Scottish Government would accept the full liability for pensions, in order to guarantee their value and for continuity. That is in Westminster’s interests as well, as they would be required to honour these commitments anyway. It would also provide a guarantee for people from the rest of the UK that are living and saving in Scotland." https://www.believeinscotland.org