Cabinet Secretary for Finance

Current role holder: Kate Forbes MSP

Kate Forbes  MSP

Kate Forbes was appointed as Cabinet Secretary for Finance in February 2020.


The Cabinet Secretary has responsibility for:

  • Budget Bill
  • managing the public finances
  • fiscal policy and taxation
    • income
    • Fiscal Framework
  • Scottish budget, budgetary monitoring and reporting
  • government procurement
  • National Performance Framework
  • cross-government coordination of wellbeing policies
  • local government finance
  • public bodies policy
  • Scottish futures trust
  • public sector pay
  • Digital Economy
  • government statistics


She is from Dingwall, although has spent part of her upbringing in Glasgow and India. Until she was elected as MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch, Kate was employed as an accountant in the banking industry. Prior to that she studied History at the Universities of Cambridge and Edinburgh with a focus on human migration.

As a backbencher, she has served on the Scottish Parliament's Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee, the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee, the Health and Sport Committee and the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee. She also served as Parliamentary Liaison Officer for Finance and the Constitution.

As well as leading a campaign to ban plastic straws, Kate has participated in several cross party groups at Holyrood including Crofting, Gaelic, Human Trafficking, Palliative Care and Rural Policy. A fluent Gaelic speaker, Kate made history earlier this year by becoming the first female MSP to give a plenary speech entirely in Gaelic in the current Scottish Parliament chamber.