The House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee will next week take evidence from Danny Alexander MP, Chief Secretary to the Treasury as part of their inquiry into the economic implications for the whole of the UK of any potential Scottish Independence.
The session will be a crucial part of the Committee’s inquiry as Mr Alexander will be quizzed on the Treasury’s position on the possible economic impact of an independent Scotland and for details of the projections the department is producing to ensure the electorate at the proposed referendum have adequate information to make an informed decision.
Areas the Committee will cover with Mr Alexander include:
- how the assets and liabilities of Scotland and the rest of the UK would be divided in the event of a ‘Yes’ vote;
- whether it is possible for the UK and an independent Scotland to have a monetary union without a fiscal union in light of the SNP’s view that an independent Scotland would continue to use sterling as its currency;
- if an Independent Scotland did continue to use sterling what would be the Bank of England’s role, including as a potential lender of last resort.
Commenting, Lord MacGregor, Chairman of the House of Lords Economic Affairs Committee, said:
“This evidence session will be a key part of our inquiry as we will question Danny Alexander on the Treasury’s position on the economic impact of Scottish independence. It isvital that Scottish voters have accurate and independent information on potential economic impact of a ‘yes’ vote as well as the well-rehearsed constitutional arguments. Our inquiry aims to provide that.
“Following our evidence session with Mr Alexander we will be visiting Scotland on the 24 and 25 October to take evidence from Alistair Darling, MSPs and other key witnesses. By taking evidence from The Treasury first, we will ensure we can ask for their views on the UK government’s economic projections for an independent Scotland.”
The evidence session will take place at 3.30pm on Tuesday 16 October in Committee Room 1 of the House of Lords and will be webcast live at www.parliamentlive.tv.
The evidence session is also open to the public. Journalists wishing to attend should go to Parliament’s Cromwell Green Entrance and should allow time for security screening.