Throughout the referendum debate, the Socialist Party and this blog, tried to explain that there was no such thing as actual independence in the economic sense. That a sovereign Scotland would still be subject to the world market and despite all the SNP promises of jam tomorrow it would be still subjugated by world capital.
Today we see how the world market and the fall in oil prices would have directly impacted upon Salmond’s budget and any reforms he would have proposed. An independent Scotland in its first year would have faced a £6.4bn "gaping chasm" in its finances, the Treasury has calculated based on the slump in the oil price and would have forced the Scottish Government in 2016 to implement unprecedented levels of cuts in public services, according to the Whitehall department. The pay freeze announced by one of the biggest employers in the oil business in the North-east is just the first symptom of the chilling effect the low price could have on one of Scotland’s key industries. The number of insolvencies of UK oil and gas services companies has trebled in the last year amid the huge fall in oil prices, according to a new report by the accountancy firm Moore Stephens. The drop in oil prices is triggering cost cutting across much of the sector and the reduction in capital investment means less work for oil and gas services companies.
And for those left nationalists who sought to claim a “free” Scotland would tax the rich, the oil industry is already lobbying for relief from taxes.