News: 1st April 2014

Scottish SMEs wary over independence implications

Scottish SMEs wary over independence implications

Scotland’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are somewhat divided over the possible implications of their nation securing independence, according to a new survey by Ingenious Britain.
 
A total of 37 per cent surveyed said that leaving the UK would be a positive step for Scotland, while 10 per cent said it would have no impact. Almost half (48 per cent) were concerned independence would be a negative step for their business.
 
Within the study of 1,000 Scottish small business owners, more than 90 per cent of respondents were already confident about how they would vote in the upcoming referendum to be held on 18th September.
 
More than four-in-10 (41 per cent) respondents said they believed independence would make it less likely for them to be able to invest in business growth, compared to 36 per cent who felt it would make them more likely to be able to do so.
 
Michelle Thomson, director of the pro-independence business and economic policy network Business for Scotland, said: “Day in, day out, Business for Scotland is welcoming new members, business owners who see what an independent Scotland could mean for them.
 
“Using the powers of devolution Scotland has the most competitive business environment in the UK thanks to a range of measures, like the small business bonus scheme, which mean we are next only to London in terms of securing overseas investment and jobs, due to the fantastic efforts of Scottish Development International.”
 
Meanwhile, a spokesman for the pro-Union, Better Together campaign reiterated that being part of the UK was good for Scotland’s small businesses.
 
“Having access to a single market of 63 million people rather than five million means there are greater opportunities for Scotland’s employers,” he said.
 
“Where is the sense in creating a barrier between Scottish businesses and their customers where none exists today?

“What businesses in Scotland need is clarity from Alex Salmond about what would replace the pound. Would we rush to adopt the euro or would we set up a separate unproven currency?”



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