The SDA policies seek to be friendly to business and all commercial activities, upon which our welfare and standard of living depend. The current 55+% of the available national workforce absorbed by the spendthrift public sector must be reduced. We need to ‘Nokia-ise’ our economy, encourage inward investment and stimulate company productivity across the full spectrum of manufacturing and commercial activity.
When a higher proportion of the workforce is engaged in wealth generating private sector jobs there will be a larger proportion of wealth available within our communities and an increase in the tax revenues available for Social Services.
The SDA will seek to promote heavy investment to redress the decades on under-investment in our roads, railways, schools, hospitals, sporting facilities, ports and electrical transmission networks.
The entrepreneurial and innovative talents of the Scots are renowned and respected around the world. We have contributed much to the Arts, Medicine, Engineering, Communications, Agriculture, Energy resources, and other sciences. Many Scottish companies are successfully competing domestically and within the highly competitive global markets. Scotland needs to develop as a primary manufacturer of high-value, but not necessarily high volume products and as a purveyor of high-value services. The SDA will support and encourage them to develop with an increase in collaborative research and development funding and a reduction in bureaucracy.
Database of Scottish Companies
The industrial decline of the past fifty years has been devastating for Scotland's communities, particularily in terms of unemployment and poverty. Industrial capability is even now shifting from the West to Asia. To survive within this trend Scotland needs to be more pro-active at promoting the capabilities of our companies, with their abundance of creative, imaginative and innovative skills.
What does Scotland have to offer? Currently there is a scarcity of such information! To complement the present individualistic company approach, a need has been identified to establish an internet based website to provide a national database profiling all companies and organisations operating in Scotland. Such a collective database should be free for all to explore, thereby promoting free publicity and advertising for all Scottish businesses on a global-wide basis.
The database would be formulated to identify the core products, vision statements, services and skills available for both the domestic and the export markets, and would therefore open up opportunities for tourism, import and export businesses and new industries to exploit Scotland's abundant resources. In turn, these opportunities would generate employment growth for Scottish businesses, both in the domestic and the global markets.
With a low-tax economy, Independent Scotland will be able to establish itself as a cost-effective gateway to continental Europe and Scandinavia. Freeports would be established to handle goods travelling by air, land and sea -- substantially cheaper as a result of our proposed low tax regime.
We propose Freeports, based initially at Prestwick -- for goods travelling by air, at Bathgate -- for retailing cars and commercial vehicles, and at the deepwater ports of Hunterston, Invergordon and Scapa Flow in Orkney -- to provide container exchange facilities between the large ocean going and the coastal feeder container ships serving continental Europe and the Scandinavian countries.
Scotland is served by a range of internal ferries providing vital services connecting our island communities with the mainland transport networks. Scotland is also served by a mixture of scheduled and ad-hoc ferries linking us to our neighbours. The Denmark, Faroe Islands and Iceland ferry connects at Scrabster, ferries to northern Ireland run from Stranraer, Troon and Cairnryan. From Rosyth a regular ferry runs to Zeebrugge and from Lerwick a range of ferry services provides links to Denmark, the Faroe Islands and Iceland.
To meet the demands of the growing business interaction between Scotland and Norway, a need has been identified to establish scheduled ferry services between Aberdeen and Norway. The ferries would provide regular freight and personnel transport services, including the promotion of tourism to Norway, a country with which we share significant commercial and cultural links.
When Scotland resumes her sovereign status the development of the ferry terminals within the Freeport network would generate much needed business expansion, tourism and employment.