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Independence will allow Scotland to design policies on tax, spending and regulation for the particular needs of the Scottish economy, to support the growth and innovation that will deliver prosperity and jobs.

All developed economies need to address the challenges posed by changing social and economic circumstances. Scotland, with its strong asset base and skilled workforce, will be in a strong position to face these challenges.

Spending on social protection (on things like welfare benefits and pensions), as a share of GDP, has been lower in Scotland than in the UK in each of the past five years – and lower than in the majority of EU-15 countries during 2011.

Source: Scotland's Future, Scottish Government, November 2013.