Belfast Telegraph

Leading Ulster-Scot warns Yes vote will bring confusion and uncertainty

By Noel McAdam

A senior unionist has warned of confusion in Scotland if voters opt in favour of independence in two weeks' time.

Trevor Wilson, chair of the province-wide Ulster Unionist councillors association, said there are huge questions over whether an independent Scotland would be able to join the EU or if its application would be vetoed by Spain or Belgium.

"I am concerned at the level of confusion that exists with regard to what would happen in the event of a Yes vote," he said.

Mr Wilson, who sits on the board of the Ulster-Scots Agency, also asked: "Would businesses relocate from Scotland due to fears of economic uncertainty?

"And that's before we even consider the cost of setting up new tax and welfare systems, a defence force and a network of foreign embassies.".

The Cookstown councillor continued: "The question of whether or not Scotland remains within the United Kingdom is of course a matter for the Scottish people to decide.

"However, as fellow citizens of the United Kingdom, we obviously have a very keen interest in what Scotland decides and my personal opinion is that I strongly want to see Scotland remain as a valued member of the United Kingdom."

In arguing against independence, Mr Wilson cited the fact that Scotland is visible from many points on the Northern Ireland coast and there are long ties of blood and kinship as well as centuries-old links in social, cultural and economic terms.

"Many local businesses trade with Scotland and many thousands of local students study and have studied at Scottish universities," he said.

"The ports of Stranraer and Cairnryan have long been the entry points for local businesses to transport goods to and from Scotland and for many Northern Ireland families to travel to Great Britain.

"The Union has served Northern Ireland very well and I believe that it has also served Scotland well. Scotland has made a massive contribution to the national life of the UK, providing business and political leaders for centuries.

"The fact is that the United Kingdom is the fifth largest economy on the planet, and I do not believe that this is something which Scots would wish to leave lightly.

"I, for one, sincerely hope that the Scots vote to remain within the United Kingdom in just over two weeks' time."

Belfast Telegraph

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