A well-designed sterling union will be needed if Scotland votes for independence

Oliver Harvey, George Saravelos 28 May 2014

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The currency options of an independent Scotland have become a crucial point of contention for both sides ahead of the September 2014 referendum. However, the debate has so far focused on the suitability of different regimes based on the optimal currency area framework or fiscal implications (Armstrong 2013). There has been little focus on the practical issues involved. This is problematic because a breakup of the sterling area would be historically unprecedented and uniquely complex.

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Topics:  Europe's nations and regions Monetary policy

Tags:  monetary independence, currency union, Bank of England, Currency unions, Scotland, sterling, Scottish independence

The Scottish question

Angus Armstrong, Monique Ebell 26 October 2013

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In less than one year, on 18 September 2014, the Scottish electorate will vote on a question of historic significance – should Scotland remain in the UK, or should it become an independent country?

But what would an independent Scotland look like? We think that one important question that has not received nearly enough attention is debt. How will the existing UK government debt be divided between an independent Scotland and the continuing UK – assuming the remaining home nations constitute the continuing UK (Tierney 2013)?

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Topics:  Europe's nations and regions Macroeconomic policy

Tags:  independence, debt, Currency unions, Scotland, sterling

How many monies does Africa need?

Thorvaldur Gylfason 21 May 2009

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Despite Africa’s great diversity of culture and languages, many Africans identify themselves as Africans first, then as Congolese, Kenyans, Nigerians, South Africans, and so forth. Most Europeans, North Americans, and Asians have it the other way round – country first, then continent. Even so, national boundaries within Africa are generally less open than those within Europe, due to a variety of legal and regulatory restrictions that hamper the cross-border flow of goods, energy, services, capital, and labour. Many of these restrictions need to be relaxed to spur growth.

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Topics:  Development

Tags:  Nigeria, Currency unions, West African Monetary Zone