‘No’ campaigners are adamant that Scotland, a nation of just five million people, is economically ill-equipped to deal with life alone. The crux of the argument is the fact that its exports sector is weighted towards international communities which, after 18 September, Scotland may no longer be part of.
There are no guarantees that a future Scotland will be an automatic member of the European Union. Therefore, whether or not Scottish independence will have a negative drag on its exports to the remainder of the UK and the EU has been a political hot potato.
In 2011, Scotland’s top five export industries were food and beverages, which was worth £4.7bn to the economy; coke, refined petroleum and chemical products (£4.1bn), professional services (such as accountancy and engineering – £1.7bn), wholesale retail trade (£1.7bn) and financial and insurance (£1.4bn).