The attempt by Wales’s First Minister to contribute to Scotland’s constitutional debate (your report, 21 November) is nonsensical in terms of both economics and politics.
In economic terms it would be in Scotland and rUK’s interests to negotiate a shared currency within a commonly agreed framework. Of course it would require negotiation, but the desirability for all concerned has even been conceded by the head of the No campaign, former Chancellor Alistair Darling.
In political terms, I must somehow have missed the bit about First Ministers of devolved administrations having a veto over the UK’s economic agreements with other countries.
Can Alex Salmond block the UK’s arms deals with Saudi Arabia? Does Northern Ireland’s First Minister sign off David Cameron’s agreements with the USA?
This is truly desperate stuff from the No campaign; yet another reminder of why it is referred to as “Project Fear”.
The Welsh First Minister suggests that a sterling currency union might suffer the same problems as presently afflict the Euro. He ignores the undoubted fact that the eurozone’s problems are self-inflicted.
The Maastricht Treaty laid down conditions of convergence for euro members, which the organisers proceeded to ignore. They admitted Italy “because it was a founding member of the EU” and Greece “because it was the cradle of democracy”. Neither of these ever had a chance of meeting the criteria.
A sterling currency union would start from convergence. Ever since the UK closed the Scottish Mint, in breach of the Treaties of Union, the Bank of England has been in effect the Central Bank of the UK. Scotland owns 8.9 per cent of it, and would be entitled to a seat on its governing board.
As an oil-based currency Scotland’s would be “harder” than the rest of the UK, but this would be containable. If, as is possible, the UK votes to leave the EU, what other countries might want to join the sterling zone, and what would be the criteria?