Gordon Brown: Independence calls from SNP are ‘out of touch’
While support for Scottish independence continues to grow, Mr Neil said the SNP need to be “honest” about the huge problems the country will face if it separates from the UK.
Mr Neil admitted he believes Scotland is “very capable” of running itself, warning it was the SNP he was worried about.
In response to a Twitter message insinuating he was belittling Scotland, the former BBC journalist tweeted: “Not at all. Scotland very capable of running itself.
“But you need to be honest about huge problems/hit to prosperity for first decade or so of separation from SUK.
“And if it was based on loony economics of SNP Twitter hordes, you’d quickly be banana republic without the bananas.”
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His comments come after a similar row sparked when Dr Tim Rideout, convenor of the Scottish Currency Group and a member of the SNP’s Development Committee, brought up the need for a Scottish pound.
Dr Rideout claimed a meal at a restaurant would still be valued at the same as the pound sterling the day after the creation of the new currency.
Mr Neil replied by stating economic was not Dr Rideout’s “strong point” before pointing out in order to stop the Scottish pound plummeting, interest rates would rise, causing detrimental issues for businesses.
The former BBC journalist faced backlash from independence supporters.
One person replied: “And if S£ depreciates the price of our exports falls and Moree is demanded thus stabilising S£.
“Balance of payments will be decent in iScot.”
But Mr Neil hit back, saying Scotland will need one “helluva depreciation” to make that “decent”.
Previously, the SNP proposed an approach to use the pound without a formal currency union.
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Countries such as Panama and Montenegro do this with the US dollar and euro respectively.
Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is hoping to land a second independence referendum just five years after the Scottish public voted to remain part of the UK.
So far, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has refused another referendum but polls are now suggesting a majority of Scots are in favour of leaving the UK.
Ms Sturgeon claimed it has “never been so certain” the country will vote to separate from the Union.
While speaking at the party’s annual conference last month, she said: “Scotland is now a nation on the cusp of making history.
“Independence is in clear sight – and with unity of purpose, humility and hard work I have never been so certain that we will deliver it.
“The people of Scotland have the right to choose their future.
“Let’s now focus all our efforts on making sure we bring about that better country they and future generations deserve.”
“We can overcome poverty, inequality, and we lead the way in tackling the climate emergency.
“The question for all of us as we look ahead to the election next May is this – who should be taking the decisions that shape our futures?
“We know that it is the people who live here, wherever they come from, who can best harness Scotland’s immense human and natural resources to the benefit of everyone.”
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