The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIFPA) Scotland has today released a substantial report The Scottish Referendum: Scotland’s future in the balance which addresses tough questions around the future financing of an independent Scotland.
The report for the first time considers what a balance sheet for the current devolved Scottish public sector might look like and examines in detail the questions around Scotland’s current financial position and the future financial sustainability of Scotland.
As Scotland is asked to vote on whether it should remain as part of the UK or whether it should become independent, CIPFA believes that the public deserves more transparent and understandable data on Scotland’s finances.
Speaking on the report Don Peebles, Head of CIPFA Scotland said:
“CIPFA thinks that the decision the Scottish people are being asked to take is vitally important and needs to be supported by financial information that is readily understandable.
“A balance sheet for the Scottish public sector would provide a starting point that would help voters to understand clearly what we know about where Scotland’s finances are now, but also where further information needs to be provided.
“Our hope is that this report helps to shed light on the debate so as to better inform voters on all sides of the argument.”
CIPFA Scotland’s report highlights three important points:
CIPFA Scotland’s report concludes that an independent Scotland’s public sector would face similar challenges to the rest of the UK in terms of financial sustainability going forwards.
Importantly as a sovereign state an independent Scottish government would need to use the financial tools and levers available to it, to make decisions on taxation, spending and borrowing in order to meet these challenges and ensure that Scottish public services were affordable and sustainable for future generations.
A copy of the report The Scottish Referendum: Scotland’s future in the balance can be downloaded from the CIPFA website: http://www.cipfa.org/regions/scotland
Notes to editors:
A full copy of the report The Scottish Referendum: Scotland’s Future in the Balance can be downloaded from the website.