A report by the Institute of Fiscal Studies which concludes Scotland’s tax and benefits system is more progressive than the rest of the UK is a compelling argument in favour of independence.
On Thursday, MSPs will vote on the proposed Scottish tax bands for the next financial year, which would increase taxes for higher earners.
And the IFS think tank reports that policies introduced in Scotland since 2017, such as changes to the benefits system, have particularly increased the incomes of poorer families with children.
Amongst the poorest 30%, Scottish reforms are set to raise the incomes of households with children by around £2,000 per year on average, the IFS said.
Research economist Tom Wernham said:
“The Scottish Government has used devolved income tax and benefit policy to make the system more progressive, as well as to raise more revenue to fund public services.
“These changes imply big increases in income for poorer households with children.”
Commenting on the IFS report, SNP MSP Kenneth Gibson said:
“It’s gratifying to see the IFS recognising the fairer policies implemented by the SNP Scottish Government which are making a real difference to the lives of ordinary Scots.
“As the austerity-obsessed Westminster Government continues to hammer the most hard-pressed in society while dishing out billions of pounds in crony contracts to their mates, the SNP Scottish Government has again and again demonstrated its commitment to tackling child poverty and delivering progressive policies to benefit our poorest families.
“This is a compelling argument for independence.
“There is only so much we can do with the limited powers of devolution and a budget constrained under Westminster control.
“Only through independence can Scotland get rid of the Tories for good and build a fairer, more equal, more prosperous country so all of our citizens can reach our potential.”