Is Scotland’s independent Oil and Gas business enough to pull the country out of its ongoing economic struggle since the Margaret Thatcher days?
Scotland is a colorful and beautiful country where the lions roar, and the people love to compete dearly with our south of the border neighbors.
First, we have to understand why Scotland’s current government is pushing to be independent:
• Because our football (soccer) and rugby teams play with hearts of gold?
• Because we invented the telephone, penicillin and the steam engine?
• Because we founded The Bank of England?
• Because we have blockbuster movies like Braveheart and Trainspotting?
These are all great reasons and being a fellow Scotsman, this would be enough for me to vote YES!! But hold on–I have forgotten a few facts.
The man that fronts ‘independence for Scotland’ our own commander-in-chief who believes the oil and gas business would be enough to make Scotland a force to be reckoned with…have a guess at his name.
You may have heard of 007, James Bond. He has a knighthood; a proper Scottish gentleman… Have you guessed? I’m talking about Sean Connery!
Well, guess where he has been staying and paying his taxes for the past 30 years!! The USA…it doesn’t make sense! Here’s the facts:
• Scotland employs 45% of the Oil and Gas work force with the other 50% going to London, and the other 5% floating the rest of the UK.
• Our export of Oil and Gas is 40th in the world behind Yemen and New Zealand.
• If Scotland had to start exporting gas to what was our fellow UK neighbors (Wales and Northern Ireland included) the export price would be through the roof, and guess what, they would import it from elsewhere, or start intensifying their own assets (shale gas etc.
• Scotland’s economy would suffer as the Scottish government’s new proposal to set up an “oil fund” similar to Norway’s, which is supposed to save money to support Scotland’s future economic growth, would take £8 billion out of the Scottish budget if implemented, resulting in “very significant” tax rises or cuts.
All in all, I love my country, I love what we stand for, and I love the history, the banter, and the ongoing rivalries. I believe taking away the simple reasons why Scotland is what it is would be detrimental to almost everyone on our island.
Darren “Scotland the Brave” Smith
Business Development/Account Manager
The Global Edge Consultants
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