MSPs to assess coronavirus outbreak’s impact on budget

The Finance Committee will carry out an inquiry into the implications of the pandemic.

A Holyrood committee is to mount an inquiry into the impact the coronavirus crisis will have on next year’s Scottish budget.

Members of the Scottish Parliament’s Finance Committee will carry out the work, which will consider the implications the pandemic has for the Scottish Government’s tax policy.

With committee convener Bruce Crawford stressing the “unprecedented levels of uncertainty and volatility” the budget process is facing, MSPs will look at what the priorities should be for the 2021-22 budget.

They will also examine what changes may be required to budget processes to help deal with the uncertainty and if temporary changes are needed to the fiscal framework  – which sets out the funding relationship between Westminster and Holyrood in the wake of income tax powers being devolved.

The impact of ending the Brexit transition period at the end of this year, including if this will bring about further budget risks, will also be considered.

Crawford said: “These are truly extraordinary times we are living through and Scotland’s budget for 2021-22 faces unprecedented levels of uncertainty and volatility.

“This parliamentary inquiry will examine what the Scottish Government’s priorities should be for next year when trying to address the economic and fiscal impact of Covid-19.”

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