Deputy first Minister to set Scotland a bold, ambitious budget for the future

13 November 2015

The Deputy First Minister and Finance Secretary John Swinney will publish financial plans for the Scottish Government on December 16, 2015. In what is reported as providing a ‘bold, ambitious budget for the future’, the Deputy First Minister will outline budget proposals whilst meeting legislative requirements to have an approved Scottish Budget in place for the start of the 2016-17 financial year.

Mr Swinney said:

In response to the later than usual UK Spending Review publication date and despite the continued uncertainty around our financial settlement, I have today written to the Finance Committee to seek their agreement that the Scottish Government publish the Draft Budget on December 16, 2015.

This approach will give the Scottish Government and our partners as much time as possible after the UK Spending Review on November 25 to develop proposals for a bold, ambitious budget for the future. I am determined that measures brought forward in my budget will demonstrate the Scottish Government’s commitment to do everything within our power and means to protect the most vulnerable from the UK Government's austerity approach. We have been clear as a government that we will tackle inequality through economic growth, and my budget will advance that vision.

In years to come, the additional responsibilities we will get through the Scotland Bill will enable this, and future Scottish Governments, to take a distinctive approach to the challenges we face, to design policies and programmes that align with our vision of a stronger, wealthier and fairer society. This government has used the tax powers we have to support those on low incomes, such as removing tax on buying a home from the 50% of people at the bottom of the market. When we set out our tax plans they will be driven by our principles of establishing a system that is fair and progressive.”

The Scotland Bill was introduced to Parliament on 28 May 2015 and continues its journey through the legislative process and is currently under the scrutiny of the House of Lords.