David Spence, the newly appointed president of the Scots ICA, has set out the role the institute can play in support of Scottish devolution.
Spence, Grant Thornton’s London-based senior partner, highlighted opportunities for the institute to influence Scottish business leaders who may sit in the new parliament. ‘Some will be elected as members, a few more will work through committee systems,’ he predicted.
Raising taxes remains one of the key issues affecting Scottish devolution and is one area where the institute can be influential, Spence added. He said it remained a major obstacle facing Scottish devolution and added that the institute can offer legislation with a system taking account of its needs.
‘The current view is it will be very expensive (for the Scottish parliament) to collect tax; if the business community is involved, it could be taxed at a cheaper cost,’ explained Spence. He added the development of European monetary union will increasingly influence institute thinking, and said awareness of the euro had increased, but not as fast as he hoped.
Spence said: ‘We are running courses and making material available to members so they can help clients.’ He said this action reflected the fact that the institute has always been ‘very international’.
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