Finance Secretary calls for immediate support.
The UK Government must take bold and decisive action to help protect people from soaring living costs, according to Finance Secretary Kate Forbes.
Speaking ahead of the Spring Statement, Ms Forbes said the Chancellor of the Exchequer must use every tool available to provide support through what is expected to be a turbulent period of economic uncertainty.
Finance Secretary Kate Forbes said:
This is not a time to be ducking the considerable challenges we face, and I expect the Chancellor to use the Spring Statement to outline significant actions to support households and businesses, considering that most of the relevant powers are reserved to the UK Government.
The Scottish Government is doing all it can to help those most in need. We are uprating eight Scottish benefits by 6% from 1 April as well as doubling our Scottish Child Payment to 20 per week per eligible child. I call again on the UK Government to follow our lead and uprate social security benefits by 6%.
The Scottish Government has called on the Chancellor to:
- increase benefits at a higher rate, closer to inflation
- implement business relief on National Insurance contributions
- provide immediate funding to sectors directly impacted by the Russia/Ukraine conflict
- remove/reduce VAT on household energy bills
- take VAT off energy efficient and zero emissions heat equipment and products
- provide powers to implement flexible working, to get more people into jobs
- deliver two extra Cold Weather Payments - one immediately and another in winter 2022-23 when energy bills will have risen again