World Economy

Scotland Warned of Significant Economic Risk

Scotland Warned of Significant Economic RiskScotland Warned of Significant Economic Risk

Leaving the UK in order to remain in the EU would turn Scotland into “Greece without the sun”, according to a right-wing think tank.

A report from the Center for Policy Studies acknowledged Scotland is being taken out of the European Union against its will, but warned independence from the UK would “entail significant economic risk”, ITV reported.

While the Leave campaign was victorious in the EU referendum, Scotland bucked the national trend and backed remaining in the EU by a wide margin of 62 to 38%.

Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland’s first minister, has said she will do “all I can” to ensure that Scotland’s vote is respected.

The CPS noted there was “some logic from a democratic standpoint” to Sturgeon’s “push for independence”, but said such a move would not make economic sense.

The report cited Scotland’s budget deficit, declining oil revenues and the fact Scotland trades more with other UK members than with other EU countries.

“Scotland is being taken out of the European Union despite voting to remain within the institution,” the report said. “However, the economic backdrop to Sturgeon’s push for independence is not encouraging for her.”

But the Scottish National Party rejected the think tank’s conclusions.

An SNP spokesman said: “This is unforgivable hypocrisy, coming from a right-wing Tory think tank founded by Margaret Thatcher and backed by Brexiteers who have taken the UK economy to the edge of a cliff.

“Even the authors of this report admit that the bogus economic comparisons they seek to draw with Scotland are ‘impertinent’, and the reality is that Scotland is the wealthiest part of the UK per head outside London and southeast England.

“The biggest risk to Scotland’s economic stability and security—without any question—is the threat to take us out of the EU and a single market of almost 500 million people.”

Michael Gove Friday launched his bid for the Conservative leadership by saying that he did not think Scotland would go through with a second independence referendum.

The day after he scuppered Boris Johnson’s ambition to become prime minister, Gove pledged to build a “robust” union between Scotland and the rest of the UK.

His promise to “renew and reboot” the union would see control over agriculture and fishing transferring to the Scottish Parliament and the Welsh and Northern Ireland assemblies.

When asked if he would “block” a second independence referendum, he failed to answer the question directly, but said: “I don’t think we are going to have a second independence referendum.”