So would we be a member of the EU?
We are already members of the EU. Scotland already applies the body of EU law and policy and Scottish citizens have held rights as European citizens for forty years. Following a Yes vote, the common sense position is negotiation from within the EU. Just last week, the Danish foreign minister suggested that and independent Scotland's EU membership would be a mere formality.
Scotland makes a vast contribution to the EU – in terms of oil and gas, fisheries, wind and tidal power, and our world-renowned education system. The loss of Scotland as a member would mean budget cuts for key programmes in other Member States. We are natural-resource rich and enjoy vast renewables potential, including; 25% of Europe's tidal power, 10% of Europe's wave power, 25% of Europe's off-shore wind resources and the North Sea contains Western Europe's largest oil and natural gas reserves. How can the anti-independence parties seriously argue that it wouldn't be in the economic, social and political interests of the EU to ensure Scotland’s continued membership?
More than half of Scots (53%) want to stay in the EU. With independence—with the ability to fully articulate, assert and protect our vital interests—support for membership of the EU would be stronger still at 61% (IPSOS-Mori poll, fieldwork: 4-9 February 2013).
Much more worrying is the prospect that Westminster will wrench us out of the EU with their planned referendum. It is the overtly hostile stance of the UK Government that presents the real risk to EU membership.