Alex Salmond has criticised the current plans for a new high speed rail link in England, saying they "lack high ambition" for Scotland and the north.
The First Minister for Scotland made his remarks during a speech in Carlisle, in which he attempted to persuade English business owners near the border that independence would bring benefits for them.
Mr Salmond said options for building high speed rail links from Scotland to England are to be explored by the Scottish Government.
He also said an independent Scotland would be an "economic counterweight" to London and the south-east, with people in the north of England still able to work and trade in an independent Scotland without changing currency.
George Osborne ruled out the possibility of a formal currency union earlier this year.
On plans for a high speed rail link between Scotland and the north of England, he said the Scottish and UK Governments were working to prepare joint plans and initial findings from their review were due in the summer. He said an independent Scotland would build on this work.