The Scotsman cartoon: Independent Scotland’s finances

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AN independent Scotland would be left with a multi-billion pound black hole in its public finances and forced to embark on further austerity-style cuts or hike up taxes, a leading think tank has warned.

The London-based Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) also claims Scotland would be in a far worse position than the rest of the UK, with a fiscal gap ranging between £3 to 10 billion, in the decades ahead as North Sea oil revenues dry up and the ageing population takes its toll.

Illustration: Iain Green

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Scottish independence: ‘Fiscal black hole’ warning