- By Bill Heaney
- Finance Secretary Kate Forbes, pictured right, will be opening the SNP government shortbread tin just two weeks before Christmas this year.
- Ms Forbes will publish the 2022-23 Scottish Budget and the Medium Term Financial Strategy on Thursday 9 December 2021, following agreement of the date with the Scottish Parliament’s Finance Committee.
The agreed timetable will ensure sufficient time to scrutinise the Scottish Government’s spending plans for the next financial year.
However, the tin is forecast to contain very few goodies for public consumption as the 2022-23 Budget will focus on delivering the new Programme for Government, reflecting the challenges facing households, communities and businesses as a result of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Ms Forbes said: “There is no doubt the pandemic has changed how we live, and equally the consequences of Covid continue to impact how we live, how our communities interact with each other and how our businesses operate.
“Covid has also brought significant pressures for our public finances, with billions of pounds invested in public health measures, individual support and lifeline financial assistance for thousands of businesses.
“The 2022-23 Scottish Budget will be delivered against these considerable financial challenges, as we continue to prioritise investment in the services, infrastructure and support measures that help build a fairer, greener, more progressive Scotland.
“As always, the Scottish Budget will be informed by voices across Scotland, from the private, public and third sector, to ensure we continue to promote wellbeing, deliver our climate change and net zero ambitions, and get on with the task of transforming our economy to the benefit of all.
“We welcome the UK Government’s decision to revert to an Autumn Budget and I look forward to constructive engagement to ensure Scotland’s interests are listened to as part of their spending plans.”