Ruling out referendums could boost Scotland’s economy, says Ruth Davidson

Scotland could benefit from an economic boost if further referendums on independence and Brexit are ruled out, Ruth Davidson has said.

The Scottish Conservative leader said Scotland could profit from a “post-referendum bounce” after 2021 and said she hopes to be leading Holyrood at the time.

Nicola Sturgeon has already declared her intention to hold a second Scottish independence referendum before the May 2021 Holyrood elections.

Speaking to the Scottish Entrepreneurs Lunch in Edinburgh, Ms Davidson set out the party’s economic strategy and criticised the Scottish Government’s tax plans.

Ms Davidson said: “I believe that Scotland after 2021 can enjoy a post-referendum bounce.

“That with the massive uncertainty of further constitutional division set to one side, business confidence and investment will return, enhancing the lives of all our citizens

“I want to lead a government that takes advantage of that new chapter.”

She continued: “I hope I never have to fight a referendum again in my political life. What I want is for us to now move on.

“To secure an orderly and managed Brexit deal which allows us to leave the EU in good order, giving businesses the certainty they need to plan properly for the future.”

Ms Davidson outlined her party’s economic plan based on five key areas: technology, innovation, global exports, employment and regional growth.

She said: “We want to focus on building a high-skilled, high-wage Scotland that looks outwards to the world, building on our traditional strengths to once again become the real powerhouse of the north.

“I just struggle to understand why the SNP thinks that a markedly higher tax regime for Scotland is going to achieve the goal we all want – to ensure the brightest and best make their home here.

“So I would say to Ministers – please be very careful about further tax rises. It risks driving away investment and jobs.

“And it risks damaging the very objectives you have set yourself.”