Scottish independence: Entrepreneur says nation paying penalty for indyref

Businesses are more reluctant to invest in Scotland since the referendum, an entrepreneur has claimed. Picture: PA
Businesses are more reluctant to invest in Scotland since the referendum, an entrepreneur has claimed. Picture: PA
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A LEADING Scottish entrepreneur has claimed business is avoiding investing in Scotland as a result of the independence referendum and subsequent constitutional wrangling.

Angus MacDonald, the Blair Atholl-based businessman who specialises in building and turning around companies, has compared Scotland to Quebec, which saw a loss of business as a result of the two referenda held there.

In a letter to Business Insider magazine, MacDonald wrote: “Across the board what I hear is that company bosses are wary about increasing investment and employee numbers in Scotland… They see Scotland becoming a low growth, high tax environment, the consumer will have less money and business will be harder to sell.”

MacDonald, who is a supporter of the pro-UK organisation Scotland in Union, added: “Montreal has seen a massive loss of business to Toronto since the mid-1970s. Even the Bank of Montreal is now based in Toronto.

Quebec has seen consistently lower levels of employment and growth than the rest of Canada.”

A SNP spokesman said: “The reality is that the debate over Scotland’s future has not deterred business, with inward investment booming at record levels in recent years and Scotland attracting more investment than any other region of the UK outside of London. This was underlined by analysis from Ernst and Young showing that record investment in Scotland in 2014 was driven by the ‘positive’ effect of the referendum.”

“The First Minister has made clear we are not planning another referendum, but equally it is not in the gift of any politician or party to rule it out indefinitely.”