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RBS would move its HQ to London if Scotland becomes independent because the bank would be too big for the Scottish economy, outgoing chief executive Ross McEwan has said.

He reportedly told an editors’ dinner last night: “I think you would if you talk to the Scottish Government they would want us to take the plaque and move it to England because the balance sheet size of this thing would just be too big for Scotland - 730-odd billion, you can’t support it.”

He said the number of jobs would still be retained at its Gogarburn base in Edinburgh, providing people still wanted to work in Scotland.

Pamela Nash, chief executive of Scotland in Union, said:

“Scotland currently has a thriving financial services industry, providing high quality jobs and subsequently tax receipt income, largely due to us benefitting from being part of the UK.

“Losing the RBS HQ to London would be a severe blow for the country’s reputation as a place to invest and work.

“An independent Scotland’s economy would be at greater risk of shocks, and we would be gambling with people’s livelihoods by scrapping the pound and using a new currency.

“Scotland’s economy needs a prolonged period of certainty to allow it to grow and prosper, which is why we should save the pound and grow our financial services industry by remaining part of the UK.”

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