“Growth is slowing. Inequalities are rising. With Covid adding its own malign legacy to the challenges ahead, we need to sweep away a lot of that accumulated institutional clutter. And we need politicians prepared to face much more forensic scrutiny of what they are actually delivering. I fear that is not what’s on the ballot paper next month.”
‘The Scottish and Westminster Governments are silent on any 5G health issue, including its potential impact on children. How can the Scottish Government square this with its desire for Scotland to become ‘the best country in the world to bring up children’?
‘All in all, great care needs to be applied when making judgments comparing national productivity levels. As a result, choosing a shift in international rankings as a government policy target is probably unwise.’
‘In short, ‘ending austerity’ is possible with significant but not unrealistic spending increases. What makes a promise to end austerity politically difficult is that it cannot be achieved without tax rises if the government is to keep to its fiscal rules and commitments.’
‘ It is difficult to escape the conclusion that the effects of a chaotic Brexit would be much worse for poorer Scots, who spend more of their income on goods that will attract higher tariffs post-Brexit.’
‘The UK Government needs to take more ownership for the perceived troubles of the Scottish deficit because it is clearly responsible for many of the revenue and spending decisions that have got us to where we are…’
‘It is important to remember that GERS takes the current constitutional settlement as given. If the very purpose of independence is to take different choices about the type of economy and society that we live in, then a set of accounts based upon the current constitutional settlement and policy priorities will tell us little about the long-term finances of an independent Scotland.’
‘Two years on from the referendum outcome, simply kicking the can down the road – or sleep walking into a no-deal outcome – is simply no longer a credible economic strategy to adopt:’ FAI on the risks to the Scottish economic recovery
‘With that in mind, if this optimism translates into actual activity and higher pay for workers, then the sector should help boost economic growth in Scotland as a whole during 2018.’
‘But whatever measure or comparison used, it is clear that the challenge to boost Scotland’s long-term rate of productivity shows no sign of disappearing. Back in 2007, the Scottish Government set a target to “rank in the top quartile for productivity amongst our key trading partners in the OECD by 2017”. It is clear that this target will be missed’.