The Future of Scotland

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at 10:13 am on 29th March 2007.

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Photo of Shona Robison Shona Robison Scottish National Party 10:13 am, 29th March 2007

No, thank you—I want to move on.

The people do not trust a party that tries to argue that Scotland is an economic basket case while simultaneously claiming good stewardship of the Scottish economy. That argument does not stack up and has been well and truly exposed in the past few months. The SNP is setting the agenda in the debate over Scotland's future, with a positive vision of what can be achieved with the right economic policies, the required economic powers and the ambition and new leadership to take Scotland forward to a new prosperity that will lift those one million people out of poverty.

During the campaign so far, the SNP has talked about Scotland's future and has set out its vision. Meanwhile, Labour has talked about the SNP—we thank Labour for that, although I hope that we will not have to include the costs of that publicity in our election expenses. That is welcome additional publicity for the SNP, because the more Labour talks about us, the more we are kent. Our positive vision for Scotland will transform our nation. We are committed to improving significantly Scotland's economic growth, by placing Scotland at a competitive advantage and by allowing the talent of the people of Scotland to flourish and our country's potential to be released.

Only 12 per cent of Scots back Labour's case that we need no more powers for Scotland—it is clear that even the former Labour First Minister Henry McLeish is not one of that 12 per cent.

The SNP's position is a popular one: to build credibility in government, to move Scotland forward and to give the people of Scotland the opportunity to choose independence in a referendum. We trust the people of Scotland to decide Scotland's future, and we ask for their trust to deliver that choice.