Scottish independence: Cameron promises more powers for Scotland 'soon'

David Cameron was speaking to BBC political editor Nick Robinson

Holyrood would get further powers "soon" if there is a "No" vote to independence, David Cameron has said.

Mr Cameron said more devolution would allow MSPs to make "further decisions to help growth and jobs".

The prime minister said voting to stay in the UK was "the right choice" for Scotland's businesses and its people.

Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond challenged Mr Cameron to name a single job-creating power certain to come after a "No" vote.

Mr Cameron later delivered an address to the CBI annual dinner in Glasgow as the referendum campaign entered its final weeks.

BBC political editor Nick Robinson asked Mr Cameron if he would guarantee more powers in the event of a "No" vote and, if so, when.

The prime minister replied: "Yes and soon is the very short answer to that."

line
Analysis Douglas Fraser, BBC Scotland's business and economy editor
Shop window

What's in the referendum shop window for business?

"When you look at the policies on offer for business, comparing the Scottish government's White Paper on independence with the current policies pursued at Westminster, there are large areas where there is not much difference.

"For instance, the SNP administration talked in its recent "Re-industrialising Scotland" paper about using the policy levers available through independence to focus on strengthening manufacturing, promoting innovation and encouraging international trade and investment.

"The coalition government at Westminster can sign up to that, as could its Labour rivals.

"In more detail, there's talk of an innovation agency; a business development bank; a long-term target for more manufacturing output; a more efficient tax system with targeted tax breaks for business; linking skills to industrial priorities; encouraging more collaboration; nd an international network for export promotion.

"Not much disagreement on any of that from parties at Westminster."

line

Responding to Mr Salmond, Mr Cameron argued that the Scottish Parliament already had powers to create jobs and further "fiscal devolution" planned by the Conservatives would enable Holyrood to make "further decisions to help growth and jobs here in Scotland".

In June, the Conservatives proposed that MSPs should get additional responsibility over VAT, income tax and welfare.

'Right choice'

Mr Cameron said: "The right choice for business, the right choice for Scotland's economy and the right choice for Scotland's people is to stay within the United Kingdom.

"It gives Scottish business the opportunity of trading throughout the United Kingdom and the single European market.

"It gives you the scale to make a difference on a world stage.

"But also you have the certainty, the knowledge that you keep the pound as your currency, you keep your markets open, you keep your business opportunities as you have them today."

Alex Salmond Alex Salmond said independence would give Scotland a greater ability to create jobs

He added: "One of the many questions Alex Salmond hasn't been able to answer is what would Scotland's position be if people vote for separation.

"People in Scotland don't know what currency they would be using, they don't know how long they would have to queue up to get back into the European Union, they don't know what the position would be with borders and tariffs and everything else."

In his address to the CBI, Mr Cameron said: "Scotland does twice as much trade with the rest of the UK than with the rest of the world put together - trade that helps to support one million Scottish jobs."

He added: "This success doesn't happen by accident. It happens because of the skill of people in Scotland and the opportunities that come from being part of something bigger.

"A large domestic market, underpinned by a common currency, common taxes, common rules and regulations, with no borders, no transaction costs, no restrictions on the flow of goods, investment or people. Ours really is an economy of opportunity."

Debate challenge

Meanwhile, Mr Salmond has set out six job-creating powers for Scotland that he said were guaranteed with a "Yes" vote in the referendum:

  • Control over the business tax system
  • Control over finances
  • Control over Air Passenger Duty
  • Control over employment policy
  • Control over trade policy
  • Control over immigration policy

During their televised BBC debate on Monday, Mr Salmond had challenged Better Together head Alistair Darling to name three job-creating powers that were being offered to the Scottish Parliament by the pro-UK parties in the event of a "No" vote.

Speaking ahead of Mr Cameron's CBI speech, the first minister issued a similar challenge to the prime minister.

Mr Salmond told the BBC: "I think the prime minister is the 'No' campaign incarnate - 'let me run Scotland from London and I'll pay the occasional site visit to see how you're getting on'.

"Alistair Darling seems to have been shoved aside now - he's not even allowed on to the phone-ins, he's been replaced by (Labour MP) Douglas Alexander this morning - now he's been replaced, effectively, by David Cameron.

"The problem is, when is David Cameron going to have the guts to do what Alistair Darling has done, and that's to have a debate?"

Dinner spending

In another development, the Electoral Commission has asked the CBI for further information on its campaign activities, including the annual dinner which the prime minister addressed.

The CBI is not required to register as a formal campaigner if it spends less than £10,000 under the the spending rules for the referendum.

The elections watchdog has ruled that the dinner does constitute campaigning but said it had been assured that the cost will be within the spending limit.

In a letter to the pro-independence campaign group Business for Scotland, it said: "Information supplied to the Commission shows that the scale of the event is significantly reduced from previous years and from their original plan for this year, including a smaller guest list and lower catering."

A spokesman for the Electoral Commission said: "We will continue to monitor their activities to ensure that this remains the case and we will be obtaining from the CBI the final costs of the dinner after it has been held."

A CBI spokesman, asked if the business group had to rescind invitations to reduce the scale of the event, said: "All guests who had booked for the CBI dinner have had their tickets honoured."

Earlier this year, the CBI registered as a formal campaigner in the referendum, and then withdrew after the move prompted more than a dozen members to resign or suspend their membership of the organisation.

More on This Story

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Scotland politics stories

RSS

Scotland Live

  1.  
    09:29: Fred Goodwin's office put to new use

    The grand office built for Fred Goodwin when he was chief executive of the Royal Bank of Scotland is being turned over to 80 entrepreneurs.

    Fred Goodwin

    RBS announced that the "executive wing" at its Gogarburn headquarters in west Edinburgh was to be occupied by those setting up in business.

    The centre will house staff from business organisations such as Entrepreneurial Spark.

    It will be home to its "business accelerator hub".

     
  2.  
    09:25: Blaze at historic mansion

    A blaze has damaged part of an historic mansion on the outskirts of Dumfries.

    Carnsalloch

    The flames engulfed an annex of the derelict Carnsalloch House at about 23:00 on Tuesday.

    Three fire appliances were deployed to the scene, with water drawn from the nearby River Nith used to douse the flames.

    There are no details at the moment on the cause of the incident at the 18th Century building.

     
  3.  
    Text using 80295 Super ID database - Your views

    Mike: Only people who have something to hide do not want to be on a UK data base. Such as the ex non payers of the council tax.

     
  4.  
    09:10: 'We've obviously got issues'

    Aberdeen City Council is expected to confirm that it is quitting the local government body Cosla to join a new rival group.

    Jenny Laing, leader of the city council, told BBC Scotland that Aberdeen's voice "wasn't being heard within Cosla".

    "We've obviously got issues around our funding settlement, having been the lowest funded council in Scotland for some time," she said.

    "It is important for us, and me as a council leader, that we are getting that message across to Scottish government.

    "We don't feel we can do that through Cosla and we are looking for other ways in which we can."

     
  5.  
    09:05: Flying the flag

    A Berwickshire councillor has asked whether flags other than the Saltire can be flown on the Scottish side of the border with England.

    Scottish and English flag

    Michael Cook has made the inquiry regarding provision at Lamberton on the boundary between the Scottish Borders and Northumberland.

    He said three Saltires currently fly on the Scottish side.

    Mr Cook asked whether a county flag of Berwickshire or the union jack could also be flown north of the border.

     
  6.  
    @BBCRadioScot Coming up...

    Today on #MorningCall: Would you welcome more organisations having access to your personal data? Call 0500 92 95 00.

    Morning Call

    Listen live to the programme here.

     
  7.  
    08:48: What's on the back pages?

    The Rangers extraordinary general meeting will go ahead despite shareholder Dave King claiming a "landslide" victory in his bid to get rid of the current board, reports The Scotsman.

    Scott Allan

    Former Motherwell and Rangers defender Craig Paterson has urged Scotland manager Gordon Strachan to give Hibernian's Scott Allan a call-up.

    And Celtic will offer goalkeeper Craig Gordon a new long-term deal to fend off interest from English clubs.

     
  8.  
    Text using 80295 Council shake-up - Your views

    Gordie, Glenrothes: With councils leaving Cosla, the councils no longer overseeing a local police service, social work moving from councils to integrate with health and financial challenges, the Scottish government will now have the confidence to reduce the number of councils in Scotland! We don't need 32, with 32 chief executives, directors of education, directors of housing etc.

     
  9.  
    08:31: Tourism centre closed

    A trend towards tourists accessing information online has been cited as a reason behind plans to shut a south of Scotland visitor centre.

    Tourism office

    Dumfries and Galloway councillors are being asked to agree to close a face-to-face service in Newton Stewart.

    It comes after usage figures showed a 66% drop in footfall over the past five years.

    A 12-month pilot of providing visitor information at another site in the town is being proposed.

     
  10.  
    08:20: Fan ownership Alasdair Lamont BBC Scotland

    Fan representation in Scottish football has been in the news a lot recently, with the Rangers Supporters Trust and Rangers First building their shareholding at Ibrox.

    Ian Murray

    Often, fan ownership comes about from a crisis situation at a club, such as has happened with Rangers and Hearts.

     
  11.  
    08:12: Read all about it

    There are taxing issues on the front of a number of Scottish newspapers on Wednesday.

    The Scotsman says that Nicola Sturgeon has ditched the SNP government's flagship pledge to slash big business taxes in Scotland.

    Wednesday's front pages

    As the first minister unveiled her economic vision for Scotland, she revealed a change in stance on corporation tax, focusing on "targeted changes in tax allowances" rather than a "blanket approach".

    The Herald says that UK chancellor George Osborne has come under intense pressure from business chiefs to reverse in full his controversial tax grab on the embattled North Sea oil and gas industry.

    Read the rest of our newspaper round-up here.

     
  12.  
    08:04: Goulding to perform at Glasgow festival

    Ellie Goulding will perform at the Glasgow Summer Sessions festival later this year.

    Ellie Goulding

    Goulding, who is currently top of the charts with her song Love Me Like You Do, will support headliner Calvin Harris and will take to the stage in Bellahouston Park on Sunday, 30 August.

    John Newman, Disciples and Burns will also perform.

    Tickets go on sale this Friday.

     
  13.  
    08:02: Swinney defends database plans

    Deputy First Minister John Swinney, in response to concerns over plans for a super database, told Good Morning Scotland that the proposal is "not a new database".

    John Swinney

    He added: "The database that is proposed to be used under this system is the NHS National Register, which has existed since the 1950s.

    "What we are trying to do is make it possible and practical for members of the public to access public services online, and being able to do that safely and securely.

    "Public bodies will not be able to interrogate some database, they will not be able to look through peoples' records. It is a verification and matching system to make sure we are delivering public services online to individuals who require and are entitled to those services."

     
  14.  
    07:55: High note for Calvin Harris fans

    Calvin Harris has been announced as the first headline act for Glasgow's Summer Sessions.

    The Scots DJ will take to the stage at Bellhouston Park on 30 August.

    Calvin Harris

    Summer Sessions is Scotland's only annual outdoor city music festival.

    Last year, The Killers, and DJs David Guetta and Steve Angello performed to more than 100,000 people at Bellahouston across three dates. Tickets for the 2015 event go on sale on Friday.

     
  15.  
    07:50: 'Stick to talking to Cosla'

    With news that four councils are leaving the local government umbrella group Cosla, to join a rival body, Professor Richard Kerley, chair of the Centre for Scottish Public Policy, predicts an "unpredictable future".

    "This has gone on for some considerable time," he told BBC Radio's Good Morning Scotland.

    "It seems to me that some of their (the four councils) arguments for being very important are not really material to what the Scottish government is going to want to know, which is: which representative organisation do we discuss local government matters with?

    Council gritter

    "I assume, at the moment, they will stick to talking to Cosla, which will continue to represent 28 councils.

    "Aberdeen has for many years now argued that it receives a lesser amount of financial support from the Scottish government than it is due to than other councils do.

    "The objective criteria used to determine most of that distribution don't favour Aberdeen. It has pockets of poverty, that's undeniable, there are people living in Aberdeen who are struggling.

    "But, by and large, it's a very prosperous area; [it has] little in common with Glasgow, Renfrewshire and to a certain extent South Lanarkshire."

    Cosla insists the move is not the end for the umbrella group and that the four councils will be welcome back any time.

     
  16.  
    07:44: 'Creeping' towards identity cards

    Plans for a new identity database are to be debated by MSPs later amid civil liberty concerns.

    Willie Rennie

    Under the proposals more than 100 public bodies, including HMRC, would be able to access adults' private data on the NHS Central Register (NHSCR).

    One of the politicians opposed to the scheme is the Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie.

    The MSP told Good Morning Scotland: "The main concern is the creeping nature towards a single number - a universal database - right across the public sector. It is one small step away from creating an identity card.

    "I know the Scottish government say they are against identity cards, but these are identity cards in all but name."

     
  17.  
    07:38: Play to champion disabled acting

    A play featuring a number of disabled actors is set to take to the stage in Dundee.

    Thousands of pounds has been spent improving disabled access at the city's Rep Theatre for the new production of Blood Wedding.

    Dundee play rehearsal

    The cast includes deaf actors and wheelchair users, and is backed by the Graeae Theatre Company, which promotes the work of disabled thespians.

    Blood Wedding runs at the Dundee Rep until 14 March.

     
  18.  
    07:30: Man arrested over bus sex attacks

    A 36-year-old man has been arrested in connection with alleged sexual assaults in the city centre of Glasgow.

    It comes after police released images of a man they were keen to trace in relation to a series of incidents on buses in the city.

    Three women were allegedly assaulted between 19 and 27 November last year.

     
  19.  
    07:28: SSE donation 'window dressing'

    An organisation campaigning for cheaper electricity charges for people living on the Western isles has criticised a £40,000 donation from SSE to a charity.

    light bulb

    The money will be used by Energy Action Scotland to raise awareness of the help available to people struggling to pay their household fuel bills.

    Describing the money as "window dressing", Western Isles Poverty Action Group said SSE could afford to do more.

    SSE said the donation was aimed at helping its most vulnerable customers.

     
  20.  
    @BBCScotWeather Ice risk BBC Scotland Weather Latest

    Take care this morning, folks - widespread risk of ice.

    Ice warning
     
  21.  
    07:22: Forth Bridge birthday

    On its 125th birthday, we have published a selection of your best pictures of the Forth Bridge.

    Forth Bridge

    The cantilever railway bridge which spans the Firth of Forth from nine miles (14 km) west of Edinburgh city centre to North Queensferry in Fife, is one of Scotland's most famous landmarks.

    A fly-past by a Spitfire and an RAF Typhoon will mark the 125th anniversary at 13.25 GMT.

     
  22.  
    07:14: Transparency call over principals' pay

    The University and College Union (UCU) Scotland claims Scottish universities have broken promises made on transparency over principals' pay.

    university principal

    It says over two-thirds of universities refused to provide full minutes of the committee meetings where pay was set.

    The union is urging the Scottish government to intervene.

    Universities Scotland says remuneration committees' policies were set by the universities' governing bodies, which included staff and students.

     
  23.  
    @BBCTravelScot Rail delays BBC Scotland Travel Latest

    ScotRail:

    • speed restriction between High Street and Glasgow Queen Street - 10 min delays - all day
    • 07:23 Elgin/Inverness cancelled
    • 07:36 Carstairs/Dalmuir cancelled
    • replacement buses to Glasgow Central, one to stations, one direct.
     
  24.  
    07:08: Councils plan to leave Cosla

    Confirmation is expected later from Aberdeen Council that it is leaving Cosla, the local government umbrella group, to join a rival body.

    The Labour-led council is expected to form a new negotiating group with three other Labour councils: Glasgow, Renfrewshire and South Lanarkshire.

    Successive administrations at Aberdeen have expressed dissatisfaction over their relations with Cosla.

    It says the four councils will be welcome back at any time.

     
  25.  
    07:06: Dungavel detentions Calum McKay BBC Scotland

    Dozens of asylum seekers have been held at Dungavel immigration removal centre (IRC) in South Lanarkshire for months, figures released to BBC Scotland reveal.

    Dungavel, near Strathaven in South Lanarkshire, opened in 2001

    In some cases detainees were held for more than a year.

    The figures come as MPs have called for a limit on the time someone can be detained under immigration powers.

    The Home Office said it only detains people for the shortest period necessary.

     
  26.  
    @BBCScotWeather Ice warning BBC Scotland Weather Latest

    Good morning! Gillian, here. Watch out for ice this morning. Still a scattering of showers during am, mostly dry with sunshine by afternoon. 6-8C.

     
  27.  
    07:01: Super ID database

    Plans for a new identity database are to be debated by MSPs amid civil liberty concerns.

    identity database

    Under the proposals more than 100 public bodies, including HMRC, would be able to access adults' private data on the NHS Central Register (NHSCR).

    Opposition parties argue the move amounts to identity cards by the "back door".

    A consultation on the issue closed last week and the Scottish government has promised to "listen to all concerns".

     
  28.  
    07:00: Here we go... Thomas McGuigan BBC Scotland News

    Good morning and a warm welcome to Wednesday's Scotland Live.

    News, sport, travel and weather between now and 19:00, with a sprinkling of your views on the day's events...

     

Features

  • forth bridgeIn pictures

    Your reflections on the Forth bridge at 125


  • Elderly manSuicide decline

    The number of old people killing themselves has fallen. Why?


  • Petrol pumpPumping up

    Why are petrol prices rising again?


  • Image of George from Tube CrushTube crush

    How London's male commuters set Chinese hearts racing


  • TricycleTreasure trove

    The lost property shop stuffed with diamonds, bikes... and a leg


Elsewhere on the BBC

Programmes

  • Kinetic sculpture violinClick Watch

    The "kinetic sculpture" that can replicate digital files and play them on a violin

Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.