Scottish Independence: Nick Clegg makes UK case

Nick Clegg is attempting to make the case for the UK.  Picture: Ian Rutherford
Nick Clegg is attempting to make the case for the UK. Picture: Ian Rutherford
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The Deputy Prime Minister will tell businesses in Scotland they are “essential” to improving the UK economy.

Nick Clegg will speak at the annual Confederation of British Industry Scotland (CBI) dinner in Glasgow tonight in an address likely to draw heavily on the independence referendum.

“I want to focus on our work together, government and business, and the essential role that Scotland as one of the UK’s biggest economic success stories plays in realising our vision for a stronger economy and fairer society across the UK,” he is expected to tell an audience of about 600 people.

He will set out what the Conservative-Liberal Democrat UK Government is doing for the economy, and promote the case for Scotland to remain in the UK.


“We can’t let this debate be set up as a false choice between separation on the one hand and a status quo, set in tablets of stone, on the other,” he is expected to say.

“Because the more pragmatic reality is, and which business accepts, is that nations must adapt and evolve.”

The Lib Dems will campaign in the 2015 general election for further powers at Holyrood, assuming a No vote in the referendum next September.

“The Liberal Democrat proposition protects the United Kingdom single market, one of the most important things for business,” he will say.

“A single currency, a single regulatory system, a single, open, free market.”

CBI president Sir Mike Rake will address dinner guests in his first major speech in the role.

“The CBI is not convinced of the economic case for independence and has asked some important questions of the Scottish Government,” he will say.

“These need to be clearly answered so that the Scottish electorate can make their decision with full knowledge of the potential business and economic implications of independence.”