Episode 37 of the Common Weal Policy Podcast
You can download the episode directly here.
This week Dr Craig Dalzell is joined by Bill Austin, a former UK customs officer and now consultant on customs and borders infrastructure - recently returned from a trip advising governments in East Africa on their infrastructure and policies.
Bill tells us how badly the UK's borders and customs agencies are run - being not fit for purpose either before Brexit or in this new post-Brexit environment - and talks about the multiple failures that have resulted from the UK's abandoning of customs enforcement in favour of obsessing about immigration.
Bill then turns to the opportunity of Scottish independence to discuss how an independent Scotland could greatly improve on the current customs policies in Scotland and reap the benefits in terms of additional revenue and security from smuggled goods.
Finally, he outlines how a modern "smart border" policy would enable Scotland to effectively monitor the transit of goods and people in and out of Scotland without falling victim to scare stories about how this would mean turning the Anglo-Scottish border into a concrete fortress.
You can read the policy paper on customs and borders that Bill co-authored for Common Weal here.
And you can read Craig's paper on the retraction of HMRC from Scotland here.
More about the Common Home project can be found at the website https://commonweal.scot/our-common-home
The books can be bought at the Common Weal shop here.
And the policy papers and technical reports mentioned can all be found in the Common Weal Policy Library.
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"Hiding Your Reality" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
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