GERS figures: Why the numbers show Scotland is better together with UK

Most people are currently worried about what the not-so-distant future holds. Times are tough, and every day brings a new headline telling of a new price rise.

Energy bills, our food shop and fuel costs are all rising at a rate and to a level that we have not seen for decades. It is terrifying.

The cost-of-living crisis is pushing many people into poverty and hardship. Following 15 years of mismanagement from the SNP, our cherished NHS is struggling, our schools are under-staffed and under-resourced, and workers are worried about their future.

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It is never more important than in times like these to spend every single penny of public money wisely.

Scotland in Union argue services like the NHS benefit more from Scotland being part of the UK. Picture: PA
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But now, when we are looking to the Scottish Government to do so, we see our taxes wasted on preparations for an unwanted – and unlikely – second referendum that would divide the people of Scotland once again.

The wage bill for senior civil servants working on the Government’s prospectus for independence is now estimated to exceed £1 million and is rising all the time.

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The Scottish Government’s official figures, GERS, show as part of the UK we can spend more than £2,000 per person extra on vital public services such as our NHS and spend more on supporting the most vulnerable in society.

Being part of a larger economy means that we can pool resources from across the UK and use them where they are needed most. We raise 8 per cent of the UK’s tax revenues and we benefit from 9.2 per cent of UK spending on public services.

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The vast majority of us are now fed up with the SNP and Greens obsessing about leaving the UK. Fewer than three in ten are in agreement with Nicola Sturgeon about her plan for another divisive referendum next year, but still she persists. Even many supporters of independence are saying that now is definitely not the time.

What we need is a Scottish Government focused on the day job, finding solutions to alleviate the cost-of-living crisis and repairing the damage it has done to our public services.

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We should be sticking together through these times and ensuring that people and businesses in Scotland can have a bright and secure future. It’s time for Scotland’s priorities, not the SNP’s.

- Pamela Nash is chief executive of Scotland in Union

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