Scotland's blueprint for independence launched - voters told country's future in their hands

Scotland's First Minister Alex Salmond holds a copy of the White Paper on Independence after it was launched in Glasgow. Credit: PA

Scotland's First Minister has launched his Government's blueprint for independence and told voters that the country's future was now in their hands.

In its 650-page long White Paper, Alex Salmond said his Scottish Government had set out its "mission statement" on how creating a separate Scotland could help build a better nation.

Published some 10 months before the independence referendum on September 18th 2014, the document details how leaving the UK - and the policies the SNP would hope to pursue if Scotland were to do so - would impact on all aspects of life.

Here is a summary of the positions outlined in the White Paper on Scottish independence:


An independent Scotland would keep the pound and would expect to share in the UK's assets as well as its liabilities.

EU membership

Would seek full membership of the European Union but not the eurozone.


A cheaper Scottish defence force would be established and Scotland would seek membership of Nato. Trident nuclear weapons would be removed "as soon as is safely possible".


There would be "no requirement ... to raise the general rate of taxation to fund existing levels of spending". Proposed tax break for married couples would be rejected.


Free childcare would be extended to 30 hours per week in term time for all pre-school children.


The 'bedroom tax' would be abolished and Universal Credit halted.

ITV News deputy political editor Chris Ship reports on what the plan contains - and what it leaves out:

From Scottish oil industry's home in Aberdeen, ITV News business editor Laura Kuenssberg reports on whether the economic argument for independence has been won:

With a million people yet to make up their minds, the result is far from inevitable. Martin Geissler went to Scotland's smallest county to gauge opinion there: