1. In preparation for the referendum on Scottish
independence, we decided to consider the impact of a "yes"
vote on those areas which are covered by the Department of Business,
Innovation and Skills. Our evidence concentrated on three main
areas: business, higher education and postal services.
2. We took evidence from business, higher education
and postal service organisations in Scotland. This was followed
by evidence from the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation
and Skills and Rt Hon David Willetts MP, the Minister with responsibility
for Higher Education. On a number of occasions we invited Mr John
Swinney MSP to give the view of the Scottish Executive. It is
a matter of regret that despite being offered a range of dates,
Mr Swinney declared himself unable to attend our meetings. In
his absence, we have drawn on the Scottish Government's White
Paper to gain an understanding how a "yes" vote would
impact on these areas.
3. The forthcoming referendum on Scottish Independence
has an impact not just on Scottish businesses and citizens but
on all UK citizens and businesses. We thank those organisations
which gave evidence to our Committee. It is however, regrettable
that the Scottish Government failed to accept our invitation to
give evidence or to engage fully with this inquiry.