Independence referendum risks ‘uncertainty’ in land and property markets

Gail Hunter
Gail Hunter

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors in Scotland (RICS Scotland) has warned that a second independence referendum in Scotland risks “uncertainty” in the land and property markets.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon yesterday announced her intention to seek a second referendum on Scottish independence and, while the timing of another vote will be determined by the Scottish Parliament, Ms Sturgeon stated that she preferred for the vote to be between autumn in 2018 and spring 2019.

Gail Hunter, regional director at RICS Scotland, said the move would increase insecurity for markets currently suffering due to the uncertainty surrounding Brexit.

Ms Hunter said: “The First Minister has been clear in her ambitions for Scotland’s future relationship with the EU and the UK and her desire to have an open debate around these vital issues.

“The prospect of another independence referendum runs the risk of adding additional uncertainty for markets, which are already slowing due to the unknown consequences of Brexit. We look forward to the UK government giving more details on its position, which could go some way towards offering the reassurances and clarity that the land and property markets seek.

“Regardless of the UK government’s current views on Brexit, and the Scottish Government’s response, all efforts should be made to retain our access to a skilled international workforce, passporting of professional services and attracting private investment in Scotland.”

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