Weir no’ happy

Weir Group chief executive Keith Cochrane is uneasy about the proposals under a Yes vote.

Weir Group chief executive Keith Cochrane is uneasy about the proposals under a Yes vote.


GLASGOW firm, Weir Group, has come out against independence after the company commissioned a report on key issues affecting the country in light of a Yes vote.

However, the Scottish National Party has said it welcomes the report and believes it strengthens its cause.

The points Weir was particularly interested in were currency and funding costs; implications for trade flow; taxation and pensions.

The result was an 80-page report covering each of these issues and, ultimately, finding too many unanswered questions.

One of the main problems Weir has with a Yes vote is the problem with currency — which informs much of the other points from the report.

Weir Group’s chief executive, Keith Cochrane, said: “We have taken the decision to make this report public because we believe voters deserve access to well-informed analysis ahead of September’s referendum.

“I support the Scottish government’s desire to make Scotland a more competitive place in which businesses can prosper, but the report by Oxford Economics suggests that the current independence proposals may add substantial costs, at least in the short term and perhaps for many years to come.

“That is obviously concerning for anyone who wants to see the Scottish economy continue to succeed.

“For businesses, the conclusions seems clear: the costs of independance are guaranteed, but the benefits are uncertain.

“That has the potential to make Scotland less competitive, not more.”

SNP deputy leader Nicola Sturgeon dismissed the fears of the group and said the findings were positive.

Nicola told The Extra: “I welcome the report’s findings that Scotland’s economy could succeed with independence and the policy flexibilities that it would bring.

“As the report states, independence would allow a Scottish government to tailor an expanded range of economic policy levers to the needs and circumstances of the Scottish economy, as well as the distinctive views and values of the Scottish people.

“The report also considers a number of issues — already identified in the White Paper on Independence — which can be addressed by co-operation between governments in London and Scotland after a Yes vote.

“It will be in the interests of the rest of the UK, as well as an independent Scotland, that all parties work together for the common good.”

Weir Group, founded in 1871, is one of Scotland’s biggest companies and is a member of the FTSE 100 index.




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