Which Currency Would an Independent Scotland Have?

Posted by Allison on 19 February 2014, 16:01

This September people living and working in Scotland will be able to cast their vote on whether they want Scotland to become independent from the rest of the UK. However while the issue of independence has been a controversial one for a while, it has reached new levels in recent days.

Apparently there is some concern over the currency Scotland would use if the people did vote for independence. George Osborne has stated in no uncertain terms that if Scotland does cease to be part of the UK, it will no longer be able to use the pound. Needless to say Scotland’s First Minister, Alex Salmond, has denied this would be the case. He says the pound belongs as much to Scotland as it does to the rest of the UK.

Furthermore, the Euro seems to be out of bounds as well. General reports indicate few Scottish people would want the Euro even if it was on the table. However, Jose Manuel Barroso, the European Commission President, has said it would be “extremely difficult” for Scotland to adopt the single currency if it did vote for independence. He went on to add the words “if not impossible” to that sentence.

Clearly this presents a problem for Mr Salmond, who is keen to present the idea of an independent Scotland as a good thing. However with this much uncertainty over which currency the Scots would adopt as an independent country, it does make you wonder what the outcome of the vote will be. Who will want to vote for independence when there is no certainty over the currency that would be in use if a yes vote was returned?

Currently there are more people in favour of saying no than voting for independence, so this could well be a moot point. However the currency question is likely to add more hesitancy to any suggestion of voting yes, which would certainly be a blow to Mr Salmond’s ideas.

We have a few months yet until the day of the referendum, which is set to take place on 18th September. Needless to say we shall be watching closely to see whether the currency issue resolves itself before then.