On 18 September 2014, the Scottish people in an historic referendum decided by a margin of 55% to 45% not to become an independent country. Despite all the argumentation, the result was a decisive No. That should have been the end of the matter for a generation.
Continue reading “Strategic Review 1: The Referendum Six Months On”
In his third critique of the Referendum Campaign, Gordon Wilson, Director of Options for Scotland and former SNP Leader and campaign strategist concentrates on what the Yes campaign should do to win the referendum on independence. There is no point in analysing the respective campaigns at this stage. That will come after September 19, when in any event attention will be focused on the aftermath, whatever the outcome.
Continue reading “Turn Negative on the Union and Sharpen Attack, says Former SNP Leader”
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.
Continue reading “Scottish Tourism Hampered by Lack of Direct Flights ~ Referendum Expansion Offers Hope”
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.
Continue reading “Report Highlights Emigration Fears”
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.
Continue reading “Emigration is Scotland’s Problem, Not Immigration – Former SNP Leader Gordon Wilson on Population Policy After The Referendum”
“The Scottish Government needs to prepare a detailed plan for the negotiations with the UK Government over the timescale of transfer of civil service and agency functions. It should also start now with plans for the establishment of new ministries such as External Affairs, Economic Management, Defence and Energy including service agencies such as a Scottish Central Bank. The priorities should be to fill any gaps left by departing UK agencies in determining locations, spreading the employment benefits and decentralising functions to local government.“
Continue reading “The Location of New Ministries in an Independent Scotland”
My previous assessment of the Referendum Campaign in early August was downbeat although less bleak than in June. The polls have yet to move YES-wards to any great extent but intuitively, I sense the beginnings of movement. In the street, people are now raising the issue of voting YES, asking questions rather than avoiding the topic. All quite unscientific, yet perhaps straws in the wind.
Continue reading “Referendum Update: IT’S STILL THE ECONOMY”
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.
Continue reading “Aviation Policy Options for Scotland – October 2013”
What happens after there is a Yes vote? The answer is important. Before the referendum, the Westminster Government will have no truck with discussions or pre-negotiations in the event of a Yes vote. To do so would give the Yes side the very credence its refusal is designed to avoid.
Continue reading “What Happens on 19 September After a Yes Vote?”
This paper has been produced as a joint exercise between Options for Scotland, and the Jimmy Reid Foundation. It is designed to take a radical look at the type of economic policy options which would be open to an independent Scottish government. It does not make any assumptions about what the political stance of a post-independence Scottish government would be: but the approach is consistent with the Jimmy Reid Foundation concept of the Common Weal.
Continue reading “Economic Policy Options for an Independent Scotland”