Scottish government launches blueprint for independence
Treasury warns taxes in Scotland could rise by £1,000 per person per year if it leaves the UK
THE Scottish government is due to set out its blueprint for independence today, ten months ahead of next year's referendum.
The 670-page white paper, entitled Scotland's Future - Your Guide to an Independent Scotland, will prove Scotland is able to be a successful independent nation, claims First Minister Alex Salmond.
On 18 September 2014, Scots voters will be asked the yes/no question: "Should Scotland be an independent country?"
The blueprint is expected to reassure Scots that if they vote 'Yes' they will not have to change currency, lose access to the BBC or carry a passport to cross the border reports the Guardian. The Scottish National Party insists that Scotland's finances are healthier than those in the rest of the UK and will promise to scrap the UK's welfare reforms.
Nicola Sturgeon, Deputy First Minister, says the blueprint is "stuffed full with facts and figures and information" and said today was "an exciting day in the referendum campaign".
But opponents of Scottish independence have said there are huge question marks over some of the SNP policies that have already been announced.
Chief Treasury Secretary Danny Alexander has warned that taxes in Scotland could rise by £1,000 per person per year if it leaves the UK.
Meanwhile, Alistair Carmichael, Westminster's Scottish Secretary, told the BBC that "Scotland does very well out of the United Kingdom". He said that the Scottish government's plan to keep the pound and retain the services of the Bank of England as part of a "currency union" with the rest of the UK was "highly unlikely" to work, and said the SNP must set out a "Plan B".
Others have questioned the Scottish government's plan to get rid of Trident nuclear weapons - currently based on the Clyde - while remaining a member of Nato.
If Scots vote for independence, the country is likely leave the UK on 24 March 2016. ·