Have it Your Way, Scotland, but Forget About the Pound

The U.K. government claims Scotland will have to find a new currency if it secedes from the Union

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U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne visits the Montrose Platform in the North Sea where he later joined oil and gas industry representatives in a minute's silence for the victims of last week's North Sea helicopter crash at the Offshore Europe 2013 conference in Aberdeen on September 3, in Scotland.

Britain is about to play out a trump card in their attempts to dash the plans of Scottish secessionists: If they break up the 307-year-old union, they won’t be allowed to keep the pound.

The statement will be made by Chancellor of the Exchequer (the British equivalent of finance minister) George Osborne in Edinburgh at 9 a.m. GMT Thursday, his office reports, and will play on fears that independence could put Scotland’s prosperity at risk.

Scotland’s Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon remained resolute, however, and derided a “panic move” that would “backfire spectacularly.”

“We’ve gone in under a week from David Cameron’s ‘love-bombing’ to attempted bullying and intimidation — from a charm offensive to just plain offensive,” she said.

Scotland’s 4 million residents over the age of 16 will vote on the matter of independence on Sept. 18.