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Scottish independence: Better together?

There is now only a week before Scotland votes on whether to split away from the rest of the UK, and polls over the weekend indicate the result is in the balance.

It is an emotive issue, which is both good and bad. Good because it shows people care and bad because emotion can cloud judgement. It is therefore slightly unfortunate, although entirely predictable, that the political debate has not risen above the emotive level. This may be appropriate in the UK as a whole, where the infrastructure is in place and political adjustments are effectively just superficial changes to a constant foundation.

In Scotland that is not the case, because that infrastructure is British and is different to one that would be required for an independent Scotland. So while currency is one important issue that has been raised, there are many more that haven't. How will the inland revenue work, pensions and benefits, military funding, research, immigration, corporate tax, import/export - the list is endless.

And many electronics companies have operations and customers both sides of the border. How, for example, would it affect an electronics company designing equipment for the NHS in Scotland? What about the expanding UK space programme, part funded by the UK government and with a strong presence in Scotland? There will be many such issues where just shrinking or splicing will not be the answer.

These are the issues that will have enormous impact on the future of many British electronics companies, and they are the issues that are being lost in the usual barrage of personality politics and soundbites.

So, with only a week to go, there is still time for the real debate start - but I am not holding out much hope.

Author
Tim Fryer

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What you think about this article:

I agree with you. The debate is centred around the political power bases.

We supply customers in Scotland and have a possible project that involves a Scottish manufacturer. I am holding off doing anything until I know what’s going on as the project is reliant on grants to get it partially funded. I am led to believe if Mr Salmond gets his way, all funding will be changed and anything applied for will have to resubmitted. That’s going to delay countless projects and potentially cost Scottish companies millions in lost revenue.

I am a Scot and I believe it is purely a power thing for Mr Salmond and his friends. Maybe he sees himself as king Salmond. Scotland needs England, Wales and NI to survive and we all need Scotland. I just don’t get the reason for the proposed change.


Posted by: Ewan, 08/09/2014

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