Fiscal Policy

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The Scottish electorate is sophisticated, distinguishing between voting at different levels of election. While this has led to divergence in party support at different levels (though this might be about to change), the bulk of that vote tends towards the centre-left.   
 
Scotland is not inherently more left-wing than England. It does, however, tend to vote more consistently for social democratic parties. This makes the question of Scotland’s political economy pertinent.
 
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The latest Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS) report published yesterday presented Scotland’s public sector accounts until 2013/14. It showed that Scotland had a net fiscal deficit (i.e. a gap between government spending and tax revenues) of £12.4bn in 2013/14. Expressed as a percentage of GDP and including a geographic share of North Sea oil revenues, this represents a deficit of 8.1%.
 
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Based on ten months of meetings and interviews, the Institute for Government has unveiled its findings in to the state of relations between the administrations in Belfast, Cardiff, Edinburgh and London. Robyn Munro, co-author of the report, outlines their findings.

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  • 17th September 2018

    The upcoming New Caledonian independence referendum on the 4th of November 2018 is the outcome of a 30 years-long process of gradual decolonisation. Dr Alexandra Remond examines the prospects.

  • 14th September 2018

    For Ireland, the Brexit discussion has focused heavily on the Irish issue. This has meant an unrelenting emphasis on securing a Brexit deal which ensures no border on the island of Ireland, and achieving a backstop provision which guarantees this scenario. The expectation is that this will be achieved in the context of the Withdrawal Agreement, and before the transition phase begins. Dr Mary C Murphy looks at what the Brexit transition period means for Ireland, North and South.

  • 13th September 2018

    In her third blog on international trade issues and Brexit, Dr Kristen Hopewell looks at the high-tech US-Canada border amid claims that it offers a template to ensure a "frictionless" border in Ireland.

  • 7th September 2018

    In the second of her blogs focusing on international trade issues, Dr Kristen Hopewell looks at some of the difficulties that the UK might face as it seeks to negotiate new bilateral agreements

  • 6th September 2018

    With little more than six months to go before the UK leaves the EU on 29 March 2019, the position of Scotland vis-à-vis the EU is not much clearer than it was in the immediate aftermath of the EU referendum more than two years ago. Dr Tobias Lock looks at what has Brexit meant for Scotland so far and what developments can we expect?

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