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Lorna Slater backs SNP on plans for new currency after independence

SCOTTISH Greens co-leader Lorna Slater has fully backed the SNP’s approach to having a new currency after independence, saying a “carefully managed way” is the right stance.

Speaking ahead of the publication of a new independence paper on the economy, the MSP said currency transitions have historically been successful when it is done “at the right time”.

Ahead of the 2014 vote, the Scottish Greens backed the introduction of a separate currency for Scotland under independence, while the SNP supported continuing to use sterling in a currency union with the UK.

The SNP later shifted their position to a policy of keeping using sterling until they are in a position to launch a new separate currency.

READ MORE: Labour ‘threaten to go further’ in creating ‘hostile environment’, says Patrick Harvie

In an interview last year, Slater emphasised the Greens’ stance as she told the i newspaper that it would be “catastrophic” for a new country not to have its own currency.

She said: “In order to have the full suite of economic powers, I believe Scotland does need to have its own currency.

“We don’t want to owe money in a currency that we can’t produce, that we would have to trade for – that’s not very sensible economics.”

Speaking to the Sunday National ahead of the Scottish Greens conference taking place, she said: “As the First Minister herself said a few months ago in Parliament, the stance on currency is to transition to a Scottish currency at the right time and in a managed way.

“I think that is something we can all support, successful currency transitions historically have been when it has been done at the right time and in a carefully managed way, and I think that is absolutely the right approach.

“I look forward to seeing the paper and we will have that national discussion.”

Her Scottish Greens co-leader Patrick Harvie also spoke on the issue yesterday, saying in an interview: “The SNP have already moved from where they were in 2014 to the proposition that there should be an independent Scottish currency as swiftly as possible.

“And that is much closer to what some of us in the 2014 Yes campaign were saying.”

Slater also said the Supreme Court case last week, which heard arguments on whether the Scottish Parliament had powers to hold an independence referendum, had been “really interesting”.

“The Lord Advocate made an excellent argument, I think she presented things very clearly,” she said.

READ MORE: ‘The coal era is over’: Scottish Greens co-leader tells party conference

“The Scottish people have an inalienable right to self-determination to determine our own future. I think it is unreasonable that the Westminster government are refusing to issue the Section 30 order.”

She added: “We will have to see how the court case pans out, but the really important thing is we need to make sure we are setting out a clear case for why Scottish independence is so important – what kind of country do we want to build, what does a fairer, greener Scotland look like?

“This is the important thing – to make sure people understand what they are voting for and how we are going to get there.

“We are creating a vision for an independent Scotland that people can get behind – this will be delivered in the prospectus papers that are being delivered by the Scottish Government to talk about all the different aspects of independence so people can really see what is on the table.”



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