Finance Minister for Scotland outlines tax plans in Scottish Budget

07 Feb 2020

On 6 February, Public Finance Minister for Scotland, Kate Forbes, outlined plans for Scottish taxation and spending in the 2020/2021 Scottish Budget.

In the Budget, Ms Forbes confirmed that there will be no changes to Scottish income tax rates for the 2020/21 financial year. The basic and intermediate rate thresholds will rise by inflation, and the threshold for higher rate taxpayers will be frozen.

Commenting on the issue, Ms Forbes said: 'We already have the most progressive income tax policy in the UK, with more than half of taxpayers paying less income tax in Scotland than elsewhere in the UK and taxing those with the ability to pay more.'

The Scottish government also revealed that residential Land and Buildings Transaction Tax (LBTT) rates will be maintained at their current levels. The Scottish government will add a third LBTT band for non-residential leases.

In the Budget, Ms Forbes outlined plans to maintain the 'most generous non-domestic rates regime in the UK', ensuring that more than 95% of properties in Scotland are subject to a lower poundage than they would face in other parts of the UK.

Additionally, the standard rate of Scottish landfill tax will rise to £94.15 per tonne, and the lower rate will increase to £3 per tonne in order to 'ensure consistency with planned landfill tax charges in the rest of the UK'.

Meanwhile, Scottish local authorities will receive £11.3 billion in funding from the government in 2020/21. This provides councils with an increase in day-to-day revenue spending of £494 million.

The Scottish Budget document can be read in full here.

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