Since Nicola Sturgeon’s party, the SNP, came into power back in 2007, it has reportedly received the staggering figure in fiscal transfers from Westminster, according to research by the Scottish Conservatives.
Fiscal transfers are payments given to regions across the UK from wealthier parts with a fiscal surplus.
It is believed Scotland received £10.76billion from other parts of the UK, to counter the £15.1billion deficit accrued in 2019-2020.
Now, the Scottish Conservative finance spokesman, Murdo Fraser, has lashed out at Ms Sturgeon and the SNP accusing them of “squandering” the “Britain bonus”.
He also claimed independence for Scotland would mean an end of the fiscal transfers.
Sturgeon accused of squandering £62bn of UK cash
Scottish Tory Murdo Fraser
Mr Fraser said: “The SNP has nothing to show for all this extra funding from the rest of the UK.
“On the SNP’s watch, our schools have fallen down international league tables and our economy has struggled to keep up, costing Scotland better jobs and more money for public services.
“The money is there right now to improve our economy, create jobs and deliver world-class public service.
“Scotland just needs to move on from a government distracted by constant constitutional grievance, so we can focus on the real issues that matter.”
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Scotland has borrowed £62bn of fiscal transfers
Ms Sturgeon is calling for another independence referendum once the threat of COVID-19 has gone despite the Scottish people voting to remain part of the UK back in 2014.
Mr Fraser argued the fiscal transfers would be put at risk if the SNP continue their push for independence.
He continued: “This is the money supporting our public services that would be put at risk by the SNP’s demands for independence.
“The funding has now reached a staggering £62billion over a period that the SNP has been in office since 2007.
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“Without these fiscal transfers, we would be looking at either massive cuts to public spending, enormous tax rises, or a brutal combination of both.”
Mr Fraser’s comments come after support for independence is on the rise.
According to the most recent Panelbase poll, 55 percent of Scots are now in favour.
If granted independence, the Scottish government would have the power to borrow the money needed to cover the deficit.
Sturgeon criticised for Scotland’s deficit
Under current agreements, borrowing powers are restricted.
Finance Secretary Kate Forbes hit back at Mr Fraser’s claims and said independence will give the country the powers needed to grow their economy.
She said: “This is increasingly desperate stuff from the Tories coming after a decade of austerity, and in the week that the UK national debt topped £2trillion for the first time.
“Independence will give Scotland the powers we need to grow our economy and invest in our people and public services to create a fairer and wealthier country.”
Support for independence has risen
It is believed support for independence has risen due to Boris Johnson’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
Last month, a small group of protesters gathered at the border near Berwick-upon-Tweed where they all wore hazmat suits in protest to England’s higher number of coronavirus cases.
One protester said it had been set up to tell English people to “stay the f*** out”.
Some of the protesters flew SNP flags in support of Scottish Independence.