Blair Jenkins, chief executive of Yes Scotland, argues that the GERS
figures proves Scotland has 'what it takes to be a strong, independent
Scottish independence: Official report shows 'Scotland's got what it takes to be independent'
Both the SNP and Yes Scotland campaign have expressed their delight at the release of the annual official GERS (Government Expenditure and Revenues Scotland) report which shows that Scotland is financially stronger than the rest of the UK by £4.4 billion or put another way, every Scottish citizen is subsidising the rest of the UK by £824 every year.
The report covers the period 2011 - 2012 and shows that the Scottish economy generated 9.9 percent of the UK's total tax revenues yet only comprises 8.4 percent of the population and only 9.3 percent of total UK spending.
More Scottish news:
- ASK SCOTLAND
- Scottish independence: UK downgrade means promised 'recovery' is like Waiting for Godot
- Scots go hungry to maintain London’s global status
- Scottish government criticised over ‘coherence’ of education reforms
- Scottish independence: economy will be a success after independence, says expert group
Pro-independence supporters will point to the GERS reports as conclusive proof that Scotland is not subsidised and therefore economically dependent upon England to support its standard of living - the core argument forwarded by the Better Together campaign which backs remaining inside the Union.
The development comes in a week whereby Scotland's postal workers backed independence. A motion passed by the union which represents the postal workers stated:
‘We recognise that under consecutive governments the gap between rich and poor has widened and that the UK remains one of the most unequal societies in the developed nations of the world.
‘We further recognise that round after round of anti-trade union legislation, introduced by Tory governments throughout the 80s and 90s remain on the statute book despite 13 years of Labour government ’97-2010.
‘To this end we believe that the only way forward for workers in Scotland is to ensure a YES vote in the referendum and we agree to do all in our power to secure such an outcome.’
With the independence campaign turning on what future Scots will face should they remain inside the UK, the IHME report this week showed that people in the UK enjoy fewer years of good health before they die than the citizens of most comparable European countries.
Responding to the report the SNP's Kenneth Gibson said: “These are a powerful set of figures, which prove beyond any and all doubt that Scotland more than pays her way. The reality is that
Scotland subsidises the rest of the UK – not the other way round - and also has better finances than other developed economies."
Blair Jenkins, chief executive of Yes Scotland, said: "What these figures show is that Scotland has one of the best sets of national accounts of any country in the developed world.
"They also clearly underline that Scotland has got what it takes to be a strong, independent nation and that our future will be built on robust financial foundations."
For the Devo Plus Group which aims to optimise devolution within the United Kingdom, campaign chief Jeremy Purvis commented:
"The GERS figures always prompt knee jerk reactions but a long term and more dispassionate view is needed. A wider view of GERS since 2002-3 shows that the Devo Plus proposals are the most stable, sensible and effective way of delivering greater financial accountability to Holyrood and avoiding the pitfalls of exposing the Holyrood budget to damaging fluctuations in sources of revenue.
"Our proposals provide for the majority of revenue raised in Scotland to be under Holyrood's authority but also to continue benefit from a stable source of support from the wider UK revenue base. This is the best way forward for Scotland, and the the GERS publication over a decade, rather than one year, is a clear example why."
Support Our INDEPENDENCE REFERENDUM APPEAL
Scotland which dont appear in the “Scottish” Books"
We are also saddled with costs for things we would not have in an
independent Scotland like Trident, White Elephant Aircraft Carriers,
Foreign Wars, Overseas Military Bases, ie Germany,Cyprus, Falklands
to name a few. We are also paying a fortune for our share of UK national
debt which is growing by the year and Foreign and Commonwealth
costs attuned to an imperalistic regime.
Im confident if the above was factored into the “GERS” figures Scotland
would be showing a handsome surplus.