Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond said yesterday that Scotland’s energy resources will help to ensure easy-access to the EU if an Independent Scotland has to apply for membership after next week’s historic referendum.
It is historic because it will be the first time the people of Scotland have been able to cast a democratic ‘yes’ or ‘no’ vote in the ballot box to a continuing political Union with England – the 1707 Act having been agreed by unelected aristocrats.
Answering a host of questions from press delegates from the EU – as well as from north America, Japan and Australia – Salmond explained why he thinks Scotland will be welcome with open arms as a new member of the EU.
He said: “When I’m asked this question – I think of 4 numbers. Number 1, number 20, number 25 and number 60.
“These are the key figures on Scotland’s demographics and percentage of EU resources. Scotland has about 1% of the population of the entire EU (appx 5 million from 500 million peope).
“Yet, Scotland has around 20% of the EU fishery stocks and fishing grounds; around 25% of Europe’s offshore wind and tidal power resources, and around 60% of the oil and gas resources of the EU.
“These four key reasons are why Scotland will be warmly welcomed as an independent member of European Union.”
* Meanwhile, the EU is likely to press ahead with proposals for an EU Energy Union under the leadership of Miguel Canete, the new designate-Commissioner for Energy and Climate-Change. The EU ‘energy union’ may include proposals for an EU-wide policy to buy gas en-bloc from Russia and accelerated development of the shale oil gas industry in Poland – which is understood to contain on of the world’s largest shale oil lagoons.