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Orders of the Day — Finance Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 7:56 pm on 30th April 2002.

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Photo of Michael Weir Michael Weir Scottish National Party, Angus 7:56 pm, 30th April 2002

No, I shall take no more interventions.

There are wide variations in growth. In the United Kingdom, Scotland is held in a state of managed decline. Although United Kingdom growth has been 2.5 per cent. over the past 10 years, Scottish GDP has grown by 2.1 per cent. resulting in an opportunity cost of £3 billion. Growth in the UK may be set at 2.2 per cent. now, but as the Secretary of State for Scotland recently admitted, growth in Scotland is only 1.2 per cent.

The Bill shows yet again that the priority for Scotland is winning fiscal independence for the Scottish Parliament. Scotland is a wealthy country that can and should stand on its own fiscal feet, legislating to combat its unique challenges and to take advantage of its unique opportunities.