The Scottish Budget

Finance Secretary, Kate Forbes delivered the 2022-2023 Scottish Budget on Thursday 9 December 2021, detailing the Scottish Government’s financial and tax plans for the coming year.

As the first budget of the SNP partnership with the Scottish Green Party, the budget sought to deliver on key commitments including free bus travel for young people, doubling child payments, and redoubling efforts to meet emission targets.

The Scottish Budget outlined the Government’s spending plans for economic recovery, climate change mitigation and reducing poverty. Ms Forbes underlined the pressure on the economy of the continued effect of the pandemic, previous lockdowns and the effect on budget promises.

With this budget acting as a transitional plan, Ms Forbes pointed towards the Framework for Resource Spending Review which will be published in May 2022, offering longer term multi-year spending plans.


During the announcement, the Finance Secretary said that the Fiscal Commission is forecasting that the economy will recover to pre pandemic levels by June 2022, despite high unemployment rates at the end of 2021.

Key announcements:

£18bn for Health & Social Care

Increase in minimum wage for social care staff to £10.50 per hour

£110m to provide free bus travel for young people from January 2022

£72m for the expansion of free school lunches

£544m for free funded early learning and childcare

£831m for affordable housing

Doubling of Scottish Child Payments to £20 per week

£500m to the Just Transition Fund for the North East and Moray

£20m for Energy Transition Fund projects in the North East

£23.5m for Green Jobs Fund

£25m to support transformation of farming and food production to work towards sustainable and regenerative agriculture

Land and Buildings Transactions Tax

In order to help first-time buyers and assist house buyers, the current rates and bands will remain unchanged in 2022.

Business rates

With businesses still experiencing difficulties from the Covid-19 pandemic the Government announced a phasing of return to business rates.

100% tax relief in 2022 for small businesses with rateable value of less than £15,000.

Reduce rate of 50% for retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in Q1 of 2022, capped at £27,500 per rate payer.

Non-Domestic Rates poundage 49.8p.

Income Tax

Income Tax rates in 2022-2023 will remain unchanged

The starter and basic rate bands will rise in line with inflation

The higher and top rates will remain frozen at their current levels.

Scotland’s first Framework for Tax will be published later in December.

Scottish Landfill Tax

Standard and lower rates will increase from 1 April.


£225m to be invested in Skills Development Scotland to address labour shortages.

Contact James Milne Chartered Accountants on 01224 584458, 01467 723311 or 01330 828500.