RUTH Davidson has said she hopes to be first minister by 2021 as she attacked proposals for independence and Brexit referendums.

The Scottish Tory leader outlined her ambitions as polls forecast a heavy defeat for her party at the upcoming European elections.

Speaking to the Scottish Entrepreneurs Lunch in Edinburgh, Davidson said Scotland could benefit from an economic boost if further referendums are ruled out.

She added that Scotland could profit from a "post-referendum bounce" after 2021 and said she hopes to be leading Holyrood at the time.

Nicola Sturgeon has already declared her intention to hold a second Scottish independence referendum before the May 2021 Holyrood elections.

New YouGov projections suggest the SNP are set to win an extra seat at next week’s EU elections, securing three MEPs, with the Brexit Party on track to win two.

READ MORE: Scottish Labour and Tories face being wiped off map in EU election

The other seat seems likely to be contested by the LibDems and the Greens, leaving Labour and the Tories without a single MEP.

YouGov polling of Holyrood voting intentions from April forecast 22% of votes going to the Scottish Tories, compared to 46% for the SNP.

During her speech on Friday, Davidson also set out the party's economic strategy and criticised the Scottish Government's tax plans.

She said: "I believe that Scotland after 2021 can enjoy a post-referendum bounce.

"That with the massive uncertainty of further constitutional division set to one side, business confidence and investment will return, enhancing the lives of all our citizens "I want to lead a government that takes advantage of that new chapter."

She continued: "I hope I never have to fight a referendum again in my political life. What I want is for us to now move on.

"To secure an orderly and managed Brexit deal which allows us to leave the EU in good order, giving businesses the certainty they need to plan properly for the future."

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Davidson outlined her party's economic plan based on five key areas: technology, innovation, global exports, employment and regional growth.

She said: "We want to focus on building a high-skilled, high-wage Scotland that looks outwards to the world, building on our traditional strengths to once again become the real powerhouse of the north.

"I just struggle to understand why the SNP thinks that a markedly higher tax regime for Scotland is going to achieve the goal we all want - to ensure the brightest and best make their home here.

"So I would say to Ministers - please be very careful about further tax rises. It risks driving away investment and jobs.

"And it risks damaging the very objectives you have set yourself."