LONDON Nov 26 An independent Scottish
government would create a sovereign wealth fund using revenue
from exploiting oil and gas reserves worth around 1.5 trillion
pounds ($2.4 trillion), the Sottish government said in an
independence blueprint on Tuesday.
Scotland will vote on Sept. 18, 2014 on whether to split
from England after 306 years to create an independent nation.
"This government will make the creation of a Scottish Energy
Fund an early priority," the devolved government, which favours
independence, said in its report, adding that it would also put
in place a more stable tax regime for oil and gas exploration.
Britain has long opposed the creation of a sovereign wealth
fund using oil and gas money, making it one of the only
oil-producing nations not to channel energy revenue into a
Norway, for example, has one of the world's richest wealth
funds thanks to revenue from oil and gas fields.
Oil and gas production contributed around 22 billion pounds
to Scotland's GDP last year and nearly all Britain's offshore
oil production is expected to come from Scottish waters over the
coming 30 years, the Scottish government said.
An independent Scotland would also remain integrated into
Britain's electricity market, allowing Britain to continue
adding Scottish renewable energy production to its targets to
cut carbon emissions.
Scotland houses the bulk of Britain's wind farms and is a
net exporter of electricity to England.
The Scottish government also said it would cover costs for
energy efficiency and fuel poverty, a mechanism that would cut
consumer energy bills by around 70 pounds a year, it said.
British end consumers are facing ever increasing energy
bills due to a rise in wholesale prices but also additional
costs for government-imposed social programmes and green energy