IF Scotland wishes to be an independent country within the European Union it must “bite the bullet” and create a Scottish pound, a prominent economist has said.

Yanis Varoufakis, the former Greek minister of finance and current member of the country’s parliament, told the BBC’s The Nine that it was not “possible or credible” to push for independence without monetary independence from London.

He said: “There is a degree of courage that the Scots, and in particular Nicola Sturgeon, must show if they want the transition to independence and entering the EU, to be realistic. And that includes the currency.

“It is not possible and it is not credible for the ‘independentists’, for the SNP, to advocate independence without advocating monetary independence from London.

“If you want Scotland to be independent you have to bite the bullet and create a Scottish pound.”

READ MORE: The Scottish currency question won't go away until the SNP answer it

Asked if independence was an economically viable option for Scotland, Varoufakis said: “Could Scotland be viable? Of course it could be viable.

“If Estonia is viable in the EU, if Ireland is viable, Scotland could be viable.”

He also suggested that Scotland should “do a Bulgaria, or do a Poland, a very successful country” and join the EU but consider not joining the Euro.

Varoufakis, who launched the left-wing umbrella organisation Progressive International with US Senator Bernie Sanders in 2018, also told The Nine Brexit was a “fait accompli” and that, if Boris Johnson “sticks to his guns”, the EU would come forward with “a reasonable deal as the deadline approaches”.

Brexit talks between the UK and EU are currently in their eighth round, with no major progress having been made during the previous seven.

Johnson has said that if a deal with the European Union is not reached by October 15 then the UK will “move on”, and No-Deal Brexit will become a certainty.

The Scottish Government has been approached for comment on Varoufakis's claims that a Scottish pound is a necessary step towards independence.