Tom Arthur – 2021 Comments on Balanced Budget in Scotland

The comments made by Tom Arthur, the Scottish Public Finance Minister, on 17 June 2021.

The last year has brought unprecedented challenges to public spending in Scotland. We have made significant investment to protect communities, support health and social care services, including running the largest vaccination programme the country has ever seen, and over £3 billion in support for businesses.

Despite these challenges, strong financial management has enabled us to deliver a balanced budget whilst investing in the services and support required to help the country get through the pandemic.

While managing demand-led support schemes and ongoing health demands, we are carrying forward less than 1% of the 2020-21 Scottish Budget, with every penny allocated to support recovery.

The Scottish Government has repeatedly called on the UK Government to work with us to overhaul the fiscal framework which if reformed, would help us manage budget pressures and further prioritise investment in vital public services.