INTRODUCTION BY ALEX SALMOND

The National:

Being small is no barrier to the success of independent countries such as Norway, Slovakia and others: Last week my 95-year-old father greeted me with a toast of “wha’s like us?” The response “damn few an they’re a’ deid” always brings a smile to his lips. In fact, as my faither well knows, there are in fact a fair number of countries and peoples that are rather like Scotland and the Scots. Read more.

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NORWAY

The National:

Norway can give us inspiration for a future Scotland: Many times over the past few years, and especially since Brexit, numerous independence campaigners have pointed to Norway as a model for an independent Scotland, not least because it is closest to us in Europe in terms of population, and we share the benefit of oil and gas resources, though these have been used quite differently. Read more.

The true measure of oil riches is surely how you use wealth for the good of all citizens: The black gold that is North Sea oil is not going to run out any time soon, no matter what the scaremongers in the Unionist press say. Last week’s announcement of Hurricane Energy’s discovery of a giant oil field west of Shetland is proof of the longevity of the industry. Read more.

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SLOVAKIA

The National:

Former partners Czech Republic and Slovakia are flourishing after Velvet Divorce: Slovakia is a country in the European Union with a population size similar to Scotland’s, that went through a split from its larger partner in a process so amicable it became known as the Velvet Divorce. Read more.

‘The Czechs wanted an almost Thatcherite free economy - like Scots, Slovaks have socialist ideals’: Slovakia is a genuine comparator for a Scotland looking towards independence. It is a country of just over five million people that split from a larger union in which the other half was dominant, though both Czechs and Slovaks had been under Soviet domination since the Second World War. Read more.

‘It is a strange feeling for us’ - Brexit limbo of Slovakian Scots: Ask a Scot to name a famous Slovakian and the likelihood is they will only know the answer because of sport, not least because the Slovaks recently drubbed our national side 3-0. Read more.

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DENMARK

The National:

Common values between Scotland and Denmark could be priceless: What will happen to the relationships we currently enjoy with Denmark and which both the Scottish and Danish governments have been expanding, not to mention the various friendship societies and town-twinning arrangements between our two nations? Read more.

Denmark proves how small countries can handle debt and invest for growth: When it was announced last month that Denmark, our neighbour across the North Sea with a population similar to that of Scotland and similar social democratic values, had paid off all its national debt held by foreign institutions, there must have been some discomfiture in the ranks of the No camp. Read more.

How Scotland could emulate the world’s leading light in renewables ... if only we were independent: Denmark is closely linked to Scotland in the energy sector, with the town of Esbjerg being their equivalent of Aberdeen, and the oil and gas industries and renewables are the areas which see the most frequent co-operation between Scots and Scandinavians. Read more.

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CROATIA

The National:

Croatia proves a country can join the EU and not use the euro: It took a full war to have Croatia’s borders confirmed, their Serbian opponents fighting on until 1995. It is no wonder then, that Croatia took its time to join the European Union, doing so in July 2013, a full 10 years after it applied to join. Read more.

Is Croatia a partner or rival for the tourist trade? When Andrew Dalgleish, the British Ambassador to Croatia, needed an inspiring speaker to tell an audience of politicians and business people about the endless possibilities of the “Experience Economy” he of course sent for a Scot. Read more.

Scottish fishing industry lends a hand in Croatia: With a coastline on the Adriatic that stretches for 1,100 miles and with 1,250 islands, islets and sea rocks, Croatia has a long tradition of fishing that goes back to the start of written history. Read more.

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FINLAND

The National:

Finland is proof a small country can withstand a few huge economic blows: Though it is more than four times the size of Scotland in overall area, Finland is often suggested as a country which Scots should look to as an example of an economy which, though it has its ups and downs, proves that smaller countries can take an economic battering yet still survive and prosper. Read more.

Finland's immigration issues are something that Scotland can learn from: No matter when the future independence referendum happens, England and presumably Wales and Northern Ireland will be either out of, or on the way out of, the European Union, so how will that affect immigration to Scotland? Read more.

Pandas, baby boxes and world-class education ... how Scotland is already inspired by Finland: The Baby Boxes which the Scottish Government will deliver to every new baby’s home are directly inspired by Finland, and health experts here are known to be looking at Finland as an example of a country which has turned round its health issues. Read more.

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IRELAND

The National:

Dublin looks set to reap the benefits as financial institutions prepare to get out of London: There is little doubt that, as in Scotland, many people in Ireland, both in the Republic and the North, are wondering what Brexit is going to do their country’s economy. Read more.

Irish border will be contentious after hard Brexit: Perhaps the biggest single question that the UK, EU, and both parts of Ireland must decide on is what kind of border will there be on the Emerald Isle in the case of a hard Brexit. Read more.

Ireland can show us how to live life on the edge: If Scotland does become independent, common sense dictates that we should look for an example to the last – indeed the only – nation to leave the United Kingdom, which is the Republic of Ireland. Read more.

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Thanks to everyone who submitted an Instagram photo as part of our weekly photo challenge on the theme of European countries. You've seen the featured entries from our community throughout this article.