Frequently Asked Questions - Can an independent Scotland afford its own welfare system?
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Yes. Scotland spends proportionally less on welfare and State Pensions than the UK as a whole. Spending on social protection as a share of overall spending is estimated to have been lower in Scotland for each year of the past five years.
Scotland’s Balance Sheet demonstrates that social protection expenditure, which includes welfare payments and State Pensions, accounted for 14.4 per cent of our economic output (GDP) in Scotland compared to 15.9 per cent in the UK as a whole in 2011/12.
Source: Scotland's Future, Scottish Government, November 2013.