The news of the new direct flights from Scotland to Qatar which start later this month is very welcome and brings the number of new direct services starting this month to six, adding to the new services to Chicago, Philadelphia, Zurich, Verona and the Dominican Republic that have already been announced. This growth, which is worth hundreds of millions of pounds to the Scottish economy over the next three years, is a reflection of the much higher international profile Scotland has enjoyed due to the Independence Referendum.
Scotland’s education system is “subsidising” the English economy by £30 billion a year through Scots moving south, according to a pro-independence group.
Options for Scotland, led by former SNP leader Gordon Wilson, has called for control over tax and immigration to encourage families to stay and have children and foreigners to settle in Scotland.
An independent Scotland will need a coherent ‘population policy’ to provide financial incentives to discourage young Scots from emigrating and taking their children abroad.
Tax breaks, family support grants and much more help with pre and post school child care are essential to keep families from quitting the country.
Scotland possesses five major airports – Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Prestwick and Inverness – and many other smaller centres. The principal problem is that of limited European connections and very few long haul flights to international destinations. Compared to other small European countries, we are poorly served. In essence, our long haul flights centre on London Heathrow, Gatwick and Amsterdam and increasingly Dublin.