Scotland should create its own digital currency, named ‘ScotPound’, an independent economic think tank has advised.
The New Economics Foundation has produced a report that suggests introducing such a currency would have numerous social and economic benefits.
A post by the foundation claims: “Scotland is perfectly placed to create a new digital currency and payment system. Such a scheme could stimulate local economies, create a level playing field for small businesses, and support social justice for all its citizens.”
The report proposes each Scottish citizen be given a 250 ScotPound dividend and claims this would not add to the UK deficit and the cost of the payment infrastructure would be “low cost” at around £3m.
Payments would be made via text message or a mobile app, but a voice recognition system would be created for those unable or unwilling to use the technology, to ensure inclusion.
During the Scottish independence referendum campaign, the topic of currency was frequently raised, with many Scots fearful that independence would result in the loss of sterling.
The foundation asserts the successful implementation of ScotCoin could significantly reduce the chances of any future independence debates being “unduly influenced by the fear of losing sterling”.
“In highlighting the huge economic and social potential of financial innovation, we hope that Scotland’s people and political parties will debate and consider such a scheme, with or without another independence referendum,” the post concludes.
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