Scottish referendum: business coalition speaks in favour of independence
After 130 business leaders defended the union on Wednesday, another group of 200 figures has responded to back the referendum, arguing that independence would help businesses of all sizes to thrive, while a possible exit of the UK from the EU would instead threaten the country’s prosperity.
The letter, published in the Herald newspaper, is a response to another letter published on Wednesday in the Scotsman, in which 130 business leaders argued that the case for independence had not been made.
Signatories of the pro-independence letter include former RBS chairman Sir George Mathewson, retired CEO of William Hill Ralph Topping and former Scottish Enterprise chairman Sir Donald Mackay.
The letter says, “We are involved in business and entrepreneurship at different levels in Scotland and around the world. We believe independence is in the best interests of Scotland’s economy and its people.
“An independent Scotland will recognise entrepreneurs small and large as the real wealth and job creators of the nation’s economic future.
“It will encourage a culture in which innovation, endeavour and enterprise are nurtured. It will place power in the hands of Scotland’s people to channel the huge resources of our country in the interests of those who live and work here.”
Supporters of independence argue that Scotland “will thrive as an independent country, because key economic decisions will be made by those who truly understand and care most about Scotland’s distinctive economic needs”.
Instead, the document continues, what poses a threat to Scotland’s success is “the real possibility of a British exit from the European common market”.
The letter comes shortly before David Cameron’s speech at a CBI event in Glasgow, where he is expected to argue that Scotland does twice as much trade with the rest of the UK as the rest of the world, suggesting that the independence would put one million jobs at risk.
Scots will make a decision on the country’s destiny in September’s referendum. The second television debate from earlier this week between Alistair Darling, ex-chancellor of the exchequer and leader of the pro-union Better Together campaign and Alex Salmond, first minister of Scotland has seen support for an independent Scotland rise.
Photo: Barney Moss via flickr
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