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Cross border councils to meet to discuss independence

Cross border councils are being encouraged to work together.
Cross border councils are being encouraged to work together. Credit: PA wire

Councils from both sides of the border are meeting for the first time today to discuss the economic future - if the people of Scotland vote yes in September's independence referendum.

The five cross border councils, which includes Northumberland County Council, will meet in Peebles.

The Scottish government announced the launch of the initiative last August after Northumbria University published the Borderlands report.

The report encouraged local authorities on both side of the border to work together to exploit mutual economic and social links.

Would Scottish independence leave the North East of England as a political backwater?

In six months time, the people of Scotland will decide whether or not to remain part of the UK. But the powers they decide on directly affect the powers the North East will be left with.

Without Scotland's contingent of Labour MPs, a Conservative government in Westminster would become much more likely - which could leave the North East, largely a Labour heartland, with less of a voice.

Political Correspondent Paul Brand reports:

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MPs warn Scottish independence would damage North East of England

The Sedgefield MP Phil Wilson has warned his colleagues that Scottish independence would damage the economy of the North East of England, as he led a debate into the issue at Westminster.

He said the effect of Scotland leaving the UK after September's referendum would reduce trade and travel, affecting workers and business from both countries. However, the Scottish National Party called the claims "scaremongering".

Watch Phil Wilson MP (Labour) and Angus MacNeil MP (SNP) in the debate:

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Full report: Scottish government publishes vision for independence

It could be one the most important documents in the history of the country.

The Scottish government has finally published its vision for an independent Scotland.

It reveals how the country could develop if Scots vote yes in next year's independence referendum.

The SNP says it would keep an open border with England, but listed a number of policies to attract more business to Scotland.

Dan Ashby looks reports.

An independent Scotland "would aim for an open border with Northumberland"

The Scottish Government says if the country went independent, it would aim to have an open border with Northumberland and keep the pound.

Today, November 26, it published its vision for independence, which also included a commitment to lower corporation tax.

But one business in Alnwick said it would not be tempted to move north of the border.

SNP sets out plans for independence

Breaking off? Scotland could become an independent country in 2016. Credit: Danny Lawson/PA Archive/Press Association Images

The SNP has published a 670-page White Paper setting out its plans for independence.

The long-awaited document includes a wealth of policy details.

If in power in an independent Scotland, the SNP would roll back many of the UK Government’s policies including the so-called ‘bedroom tax’, Universal Credit and the married couples tax allowance.

They would also slash air passenger duty by 50 per cent and corporation tax by three per cent.

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