Belfast Telegraph

Scotland's 'No' campaign 'largely based on fear'

By Katrine Bussey

A leading economist has hit out at the "fear" tactics used by the campaign against Scottish independence, as he insisted the row over what currency a separate Scotland would use is "a lot of to do about nothing".

Professor Joseph Stiglitz, a Nobel Prize winner who was chairman of US president Bill Clinton's council of economic advisers, said a currency union between an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK could work, as he dismissed the refusal of the main Westminster parties to agree to such a deal as "bluffs".

But he also stressed that there were a range of options for the currency of an independent Scotland, pointing out that Panama has used the dollar for more than a century, while countries such as Canada and some European nations have adopted their own currency successfully.

Prof Stiglitz is a member of the Scottish Government's council of economic advisers and its Fiscal Commission Working Group.

In just over three weeks voters in Scotland will decide if the country should remain in the UK or not.

Prof Stiglitz, from America, said: "I've looked at the debate, particularly from the 'No' side, and I've been a little bit shocked how much of it is based on fear."

Regarding the rejection of a currency union by the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats, he said: "For the most part these are bluffs."

The economics expert told the Edinburgh International Book festival that currency union could work.

Belfast Telegraph