The latest official Government Expenditure and Revenue Scotland (GERS) figures have revealed a UK dividend equivalent to £1,941 per person for schools, hospitals and other public services.
The Scottish Government’s own figures for 2019/20 show:
- Public spending in Scotland was £81 billion or 9.2% of the UK total.
- Revenues raised in Scotland were £66 billion or 8% of the UK total.
- Public expenditure per person in Scotland on public services such as the NHS, schools and state pensions was £1,633 higher than the UK average, while revenues were £308 lower than the UK average following a further fall in North Sea Oil revenue.
- The UK Dividend was therefore the equivalent of £1,941 per person, up by £136 since 2018-19. That’s the combined value of higher spending and lower revenue in Scotland compared to the UK average.
- Scotland’s notional deficit rose from £13.1 billion to £15.1 billion – more than the entire annual cost of running the NHS. As a percentage of GDP that is 8.6%, compared to 2.5% for the UK as a whole – and well above the 3% ceiling for EU member states.
Pamela Nash, chief executive of Scotland in Union, said:
“These latest figures confirm that Scotland is better off in the UK.
“We benefit from a UK dividend that ensures we can spend more on our NHS, schools and other public services.
“It’s time for some honesty from the SNP about how a separate Scotland would address the huge gap between spending and revenue – how much would taxes rise by and how much would be cut from schools and hospitals?
“As our economy recovers from COVID-19, the last thing we need is deeper austerity.
“Rather than focus on division, by bringing people together we can successfully rebuild following the coronavirus pandemic and by remaining in the UK we can invest more in what really matters to the people of Scotland: jobs; schools; and our NHS.”
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GERS publication can be seen here.