The Scottish Government’s plans to double the number of regulators for Scottish businesses in an independent Scotland would ‘double the red tape burden, Scottish Secretary Michael Moore said today.
Mr Moore said that many businesses in Scotland who do business across the UK and follow one set of rules would have their regulatory burden doubled under independence.
He said that plans to double regulation on a large proportion of the Scottish business community would be met with widespread dismay but would hit small and medium companies the hardest. Two-thirds of all Scottish trade (£45bn) is with the rest of the United Kingdom.
Michael Moore said:
‘Two-thirds of all Scottish trade is with the rest of the UK. Scottish companies that follow one set of rules would be faced with a whole new set of regulations on top of that. We need to help our companies not double the red tape burden
‘No company wants to have twice as many rules to deal with but it will be the small and medium size companies who will be hit the hardest if this ever came to pass.
‘Scottish business knows that separating ourselves from the larger, single UK market and increasing regulation would hamper trade and jeopardise Scottish jobs.
‘On top of all that, setting up a new regulatory bodies will also incur significant costs that will have to be met by Scottish taxpayers and Scottish business.
‘That is why three quarters of Scottish companies believe independence will be bad for business.’
IPSOS MORI survey of senior business decision-makers for affairs in Scotland published on December 7th , 2012 said:
‘nearly three quarters (72%) think that Scottish independence would have a negative impact on businesses in Scotland as a whole, compared to just one in eight (13%) who believe that it would have a positive impact.’