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ITV Border's Political Editor, Peter MacMahon, gives his reaction to the unveiling of the SNP's White Paper.
The White Paper on Scottish independence has been revealed by the SNP, here are some of its main points:
- Cut corporation tax by 3%.
- Cut air passenger duty by 50%.
- Keep pound - just as much Scotland's and the UK's.
- No requirement for Scotland to raise the general rate of taxation to fund existing levels of spending.
- End married couple tax allowance.
- Increase benefits in line with inflation.
- Early learning and childcare from the age of one to when they enter school.
- Look again at pension age rise to 67.
- Halt roll out of UC and pip and bedroom tax.
- Stay as member of EU.
- We would make early agreement on the speediest safe removal of nuclear weapons.
- Scrap BBC. Replace with SBS Scottish Broadcasting Service.
Here are some of the main details contained in the White Paper on Scottish independence:
- The SNP estimate they will inherit £1,267 billion debt from UK but look to offset that against share of assets
- Pensioners will enjoy an up-rated pension of £1.10 extra per week
- Bedroom tax will be abolished
- Universal Credit roll out will be stopped
- Corporation tax will be cut by 3 percent
- Air passenger duty will be cut by 50 percent
- Energy bills will be cut by 5 percent through various environmental initiatives
- End to the married couples allowance due to be introduced in 2015
- Childcare will be increased to 30 hours a week
Dumfriesshire MP David Mundell spoke to ITV Border's Political Editor Peter MacMahon after the White Paper launch.
He said that the blueprint fails to answer some questions and is "wishlist, not a pricelist":
First Minister Alex Salmond has said that excluding an independent Scotland from the sterling currency would leave a "massive hole in the UK balance of payments".
He told ITV News it would be in the interests of both governments to continue using the pound and that he expected Westminster to "live up to their side of the bargain".
Deputy Minister Nicola Sturgeon joined Alex Salmond on stage to launch the SNP's White Paper.
She envisages 24th March 2016 as the date, should Scotland vote yes, for the country to become an independent country.
Sturgeon's particular focus within this white paper addresses the topics of women and child, the bedroom tax and welfare reform, and pensions.
The SNP has set out shop with a proposal that Scotland become independent, it intends to provide free child care for all pre-school children.
This is a policy, they say, that is dual purpose; good for the youngest children and their parents.
It would also mean that by supporting more women to go into the workplace, it would generate more tax revenues.
ITV Border has been speaking to local haulage form John Miller Transport, based in Lockerbie, who have given their reaction to the White Paper.
– Davie Carson, Director, John Miller transport
"From what i have heard this morning, i haven't heard anything in the White Paper which addresses my concerns.
"So at the moment i would still vote no. My main issues are that there would be two currencies which would adversely affect my business. Also what happens to the price of diesel in Scotland would affect my business.
"And if income tax was different and higher in Scotland, would workers who live in England want to come to work for my company?"
A new Scottish Broadcasting Service (SBS) could initially be based on the staff and assets of BBC Scotland, according to the White Paper.
The SBS could then enter into a formal arrangement with the BBC, whereby it would supply it with programming in return for continuing access to BBC services in Scotland.
The White Paper says: "This will ensure the people of Scotland will still have access to all current programming, including EastEnders, Doctor Who and Strictly Come Dancing, and to channels like CBeebies."
While a Yes vote in next year's referendum would end the political union between Scotland and England, the paper stresses that the Union of the Crowns - which dates back to 1603 - would continue and Scotland would keep the Queen as its monarch upon independence.
"On independence, Scotland will be a constitutional monarchy," it says. "On independence in 2016 Her Majesty the Queen will be head of state."