Scotland would be fifth richest member of EU

PQ ANSWER REVEALS SCOTLAND FIFTH RICHEST IN EUROPEAN UNION GDP PER HEAD LEAGUE TABLE

OTHER SMALL EUROPEAN NATIONS OUTPERFORMING UK

ANTI-INDEPENDENCE POLITICIANS LEFT LOOKING FOOLISH

Further evidence that an independent Scotland will be wealthy has been provided from figures published which show that Scotland would be the fifth richest country in the EU on the latest GDP per capita ranking table produced by Eurostat. SNP MSP Kenneth Gibson’s parliamentary question also revealed that the UK would 11th in the table of 28 countries.

Official Scottish Government figures already show that, with independence, Scotland would climb to sixth position in the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s (OECD) wealth per capita league table – where the UK is currently ranked sixteenth.

Those EU member states above Scotland also undermine the anti-independence campaign’s argument that Scotland needs to be part of a big state, since all have populations significantly smaller than the UK’s, and two of them have populations smaller than Scotland:

• Luxembourg - Half a million
• Austria - Eight million
• Ireland - Four and a half million
• Netherlands - Seventeen million
• Scotland – Five million
• UK – Sixty-two million

The Tory-Labour pact is also looking foolish since both anti-independence parties initially tried to claim that these figures supported their case, as they neglected to include offshore oil and gas resources in the Scottish GDP figure - while they are included in the UK’s GDP.

Commenting Mr Gibson said:

“These official figures yet again show the wealth of Scotland and demolish the credibility of the anti-independence attempts to talk down Scotland’s economy and ability to make decisions for itself.

“The example of other successful small independent European nations is an overwhelming vote of confidence in the economic case for an independent Scotland.

“Official figures already show that Scotland continues to contribute more to the UK Treasury than we receive in public spending. In 2010/11, Scotland generated 9.6% of UK revenues with 8.4% of the population.

“Despite the Tory-Labour anti-independence pact twisting the figures to talk Scotland down - by omitting Scotland’s share of its oil and gas reserves - they are a glowing endorsement of the case for independence. The Tory-Labour twins are now left looking foolish by their attempts to distort these figures.

"With responsibility for our own finances and our own vast natural resources, we will be able to make choices in our own best interests. With independence, we would control the fiscal levers we need to suit our own economic circumstances, and maximise Scotland's potential to secure new investment and jobs.”

ENDS

Contact: SNP Press 07766 361652

Notes

1. A copy of the Parliamentary Question and Answer with the ranked table is attached in pdf format.

2. When the Eurostat figures were published in March 2012 Tory and labour politicians responded with the following remarks:

Labour finance spokesman Ken Macintosh said:

"This is a very significant report and really exposes recent false SNP claims about what the finances of Scotland would look like if we separated.

Ruth Davidson said:

"This research blows apart Alex Salmond's claim that Scotland would be wealthier than the rest of the United Kingdom …."

• Press Association, 13 March 2012

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