There must be more to economic strategy than GDP

GDP alone is not enough for a people and our economy to flourish, say the Scottish Greens.

The point was made by the Scottish Greens economic spokesperson, Maggie Chapman MSP during a Scottish Government debate on the transition to a wellbeing economy.

Speaking in the debate, Maggie said:

“GDP measures neither health nor development, neither care nor creativity, only the narrowly defined product of economic exchange. 

“GDP increases with disaster, and contracts with generosity. It makes no distinction between price and value, between healthy nutrition and catastrophic consumption. It asks only ‘how much?’ never ‘for whom?’, ‘why?’ or ‘how?’ 

“And when we only ask the question ‘how much?’ Those positioned to answer are those who have the most already. Making money out of money isn’t hard, especially when you have the right connections. The tough bit is to get it to where it’s needed.

“But we can do differently, and achieve different results, transforming not just our economy but our society, our communities, our families and our futures.

“So we must go back to what the economy should really be about: creating a better world. We do this by eliminating the problems Beveridge identified: “Want, Disease, Ignorance, Squalor and Idleness. And we must build on what we now know: that we must put people at the heart of addressing those challenges.

“We must move away from the artificial and archaic framework of GDP if we are to deliver the effective, revolutionary, transformative economy that is fundamentally human. We must make the choice that works for people and planet. And we need to make that choice urgently.”