FORMER SNP MP George Kerevan has launched a campaign which aims to change the party’s proposed policy on currency, an issue which proved so contentious in the run to to the 2014 independence referendum.

The policy motions to be debated at the upcoming SNP conference say an independent Scotland should have its own currency, with transition from sterling within 10 years once six tests proposed by the Growth Commission are met.

Kerevan, a columnist for The National, is fronting the grassroots Campaign for an Independent Currency (CIC) which wants to establish an independent Scottish currency much quicker and abolish the six tests set out by the Growth Commission.

CIC is calling on SNP branches, affiliated organisations and elected representatives to back their amendment to the Sustainable Growth Commission motion due to be discussed at the SNP’s Edinburgh conference on April 27 and 28.

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The amendment would see Scotland use sterling until an independent currency is formed in the first post-independence parliamentary term.

CIC say it would also remove the requirement to end any fiscal deficit and ensure foreign lenders are satisfied with Scottish tax and spending – both of which would result in cuts.

The arbitrary test on ensuring business “stability” would be scrapped along with the paradoxical test on ensuring there are sufficient reserves of a yet non-existent currency.

And there would be no harmonising between Scotland and England’s economic cycle in an attempt to ensure decisions are made in Scotland’s best interests.

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The main thrust of CIC’s amendment is: “Conference believes that achieving successful higher growth and securing a sustainable fiscal balance in an independent Scotland can only be achieved through the establishment of a separate Scottish currency.

“Conference believes it should be the policy of an SNP government in an independent Scotland to establish a separate Scottish currency within the lifetime of the first, post-independence parliament. The pound sterling will remain in use until the currency transition.”

George Kerevan said: “While the motion put to conference is a positive step, it must be amended to ensure powers over currency are taken from Westminster at the nearest opportunity to be used by Scotland in the interests of Scotland.

“We should not continue to chain ourselves to Westminster which has long made decisions contrary to Scotland’s prosperity and will.

“The Growth Commission’s six tests would leave Scotland using the pound indefinitely, result in cuts to services and spending, and allow the market to dictate an independent Scotland’s decisions. This is completely contrary to the Scotland that people want to build and we should reject those tests.

“We need to fund our NHS, our schools, our local authorities, build infrastructure and homes. We need to build the Scotland we want and we should not give that vision up.

“The views of international markets and corporations should always fall behind that of the people. The sovereign will of the Scottish people and Parliament should be the ones to make decisions on our currency to benefit our economy.

“If certainty and stability is the aim, we should not leave the creation of independent currency to be open ended. Clear and definite plans must be set to establish a independent currency in the first term of the Scottish Parliament to prevent any delay to its creation.”

CIC spokesperson Rory Steel added: “An independent currency will allow the people of Scotland to exercise their power in an independent Scotland’s economy. We need the SNP grassroots to exercise their power now and take the amendment to their branch for approval.”

SNP depute leader Keith Brown said: "I welcome any debate on the proposal that Derek Mackay and I have put forward. However, I believe it is essential that our proposal to move to a new Scottish currency has to take place at the best possible time for the people and economy of Scotland.

“It is absolutely right that that decision is one for the first sovereign parliament of an independent Scotland to make. After all, the point of independence is that decisions about Scotland can be taken in Scotland. The tests suggested by the Growth Commission should be a guide to those decisions. The policy I have put forward is one that works and one that can win independence.”

The deadline for amendments to motions being put to the conference is 9am on Friday, March 29.

Labour finanace spokesman James Kelly said: “The SNP’s Growth Commission is really a cuts commission,and there is no currency plan the SNP can come up with that doesn’t lead to turbo charged austerity for Scotland. That’s why only Labour in Scotland is standing on an anti-austerity platform offering hope and investment.”