THE economic case for independence is to be at the heart of the SNP’s conference next month, according to a draft agenda for the event obtained by The National.

Members are being asked to debate and vote on a detailed four page motion setting out arguments for people in Scotland to determine their own future as an independent nation.

The resolution summarises the findings of the Growth Commission, headed by economist and former MSP Andrew Wilson, and published last year, which aims to provide updated arguments to win a new referendum.

Wilson’s central aim was to examine the prosperity of 12 small independent nations including Denmark, New Zealand and Ireland, and to underline Scotland’s potential to match their success.

His vision is set out in the 33 point resolution, tabled by depute leader Keith Brown and Finance Secretary Derek Mackay, which will be put to conference delegates in Edinburgh.

“Scotland is a prosperous and successful nation, with significant economic assets and advantages, such as our vast natural resources, the skills and education of the people who live here and a range of sectors with existing and potential global competitiveness. Scotland is a rich country with the potential to achieve more,” it says.

“However, Conference also notes that despite these abundant resources, similarly sized independent countries with the ability to tailor economic policy to their own needs have performed significantly better than Scotland.

“In terms of GDP per head, the median income of the 12 small advanced economies considered by the Sustainable Growth Commission is around 14% higher than Scotland’s – equivalent to £4100 per person.”

It goes on to set an ambition “an SNP government in an independent Scotland should adopt the Commission’s recommended targets of (a) matching the average growth rate of these other small advanced economies within ten years (or earlier if possible) and (b) closing the gap in GDP per capita with these countries within 25 years (or earlier if possible)”.

The publication of the provisional agenda comes after The National revealed the party planned to modify the currency recommendations made by Wilson. Wilson recommended the newly independent state should continue to use the pound, though not in a formal currency union with the UK, until six tests were met at which point it could launch its own currency. But the Brown and Mackay resolution suggests a firmer commitment and a faster process to a new currency.

“We will propose that it should now be party policy that an SNP government in an independent Scotland would establish an independent currency,” said Brown in an article in The National on Friday.

He added: “We propose that necessary preparations, including the work of building the institutions that we need, such as an independent central bank, would begin during the transition period. And the aim of an SNP government would be to complete preparations in time for the newly independent Scottish Parliament, informed by assessments and information from the central bank, to take a decision on establishing a new currency by the end of its first term. “

Interviewed yesterday Mackay said if Scotland became independent a forecast GDP deficit of around 6% could be halved faster than the five to 10 years predicted by Wilson He denied the move would accelerate austerity.

Commenting on the draft agenda, Brown said: “For too long, Westminster politicians have imposed damaging policies on Scotland without a democratic mandate. They think they can do what they want to Scotland and get away with it – Brexit is simply the latest example of this. It is imperative we do something different, that we strive for something better. The proposals I have put forward to conference will enable us to build a solid and persuasive platform for independence.”

The Commission resolution is one of 30 on the provisional agenda. Amendments can be submitted by 29 March. The conference is being held on 27 and 28 April and follows statements by Nicola Sturgeon to give an update on an independence vote.