Salmond insists independent Scotland in a stronger fiscal position


Alex Salmond insisted Scotland would have been over £12bn "relatively better off" had Scotland been running its own finances over the last four years, during first minister's questions on 16 January 2014.

The first minister was responding to questioning by Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont who said, in the Scottish government's independence White Paper, it stated Scotland pays £56.9bn into the UK but got £64.5bn back, proving "Scotland gets more back from the UK than it puts in".

Mr Salmond hit back saying Scotland provided 9.9% of UK tax revenue but only received 9.3% back in public spending demonstrating Scotland would be "relatively better off" over the last four years.

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson asked how anyone could believe the first minister on the issue of Europe, as he had been "unadjacent to the truth" on the existence of legal advice about joining the EU and about the route into Europe."

Mr Salmond said the "star academic" of the Better Together campaign, Jim Gallagher, had echoed the SNP's views on an accelerated acceptance of an independent Scotland into the EU in his blogs.

The controversial issue of the abolition of corroboration was brought up by Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie.

Earlier this week Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill said if the Criminal Justice Bill, which contains the proposal, passes he would ensure further consideration be given to other safeguards against wrongful conviction before abolition takes effect.

Mr Rennie said MSPs were being asked to pass the bill and "fix it later" adding the legislation was being dealt with in a "cack-handed manner".

The first minister said corroboration prevented some getting their day in court and the announcement of a study into the safeguards required to abolish it was a "genuine attempt to bring everyone together".

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