How much money has been allocated and directed by the UK Government to the Scottish Government as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic since March 2020, and how this money has subsequently been spent?
A total of £8.6 billion has been received by the Scottish Government from HM Treasury and allocated throughout the course of 2020-21. The Scottish Government set out the allocation of this funding at three points during the year as details emerged from the UK government about the Covid-19 funding being allocated to Scotland.
Firstly, the Summer Budget Revision was exceptionally introduced last year, on 27 May, to provide the Scottish Parliament with the opportunity to scrutinise the spending decisions made by Scottish Ministers to that point in time. Full details of the allocations are included in the supporting document which can be viewed at https://www.gov.scot/publications/2020-21-summer-budget-revision/.
It included the allocation of just over £4 billion in funding for the Covid response:-
• This total included a comprehensive £2.3 billion package of support for business, a £620 million boost for health services and £350 million funds for communities.
• The spending was largely funded by a rise in the block grant of more than £3.5 billion resulting from extra UK Government Covid-19 spending, and £112 million of non-Covid related funding received following the UK Budget of March 2020.
• A further £255 million was reprioritised from within existing departmental budgets, including where Covid-19 has had an unavoidable impact on planned spending. The Autumn Budget Revision was published on 24 September and is available at https://www.gov.scot/publications/2020-21-autumn-budget-revision/.
This revision allocated a further £2.5 billion to Covid related measures:-
• An additional £1.8 billion in funding was allocated to Health and Social Care. This is on top of the £620 million additional Health funding which was allocated at Summer Budget Revision, meaning over £2.4 billion of financial support has been provided to the NHS to support its ongoing Covid-19 support.
• £222 million of additional resource funding was allocated to support our bus, rail and local transport operators.
• £190 million in additional support was provided for business and the arts.
• £119 million was added to the Education and Skills budget as part of the Education Recovery package and also ensured free school meals were continued over the course of the Summer Holidays.
• The budget revision also allocated capital expenditure for the economic recovery stimulus package announced by the Cabinet Secretary of Finance in June.
• This is being funded through a further £2.4 billion of Barnett consequentials from the UK Government, £142 million of reprioritisation of existing expenditure, and £30m of Scotland Reserve drawdowns.
Finally, the remainder of the £8.6 billion received for 2020-21 was allocated in the Spring Budget Revision (SBR), published on 25 February and available at https://www.gov.scot/publications/2020-21-spring-budget-revision/.
This revision allocated a further £3.2 billion in Covid-19 and other funding changes:-
• £780 million is allocated to business support bringing our total business support to over £3 billion in this financial year.
• A further £494m is allocated to Health and Sport which represents a total increase to the health budget of almost £3 billion as a result of Covid-19 measures.
• The SBR brings total additional support for Local Government to over £1 billion this financial year through measures such as our lost income support scheme and winter support packages.
• £270m of transport support is provided in this budget revision meaning £850m has been provided this year to support our rail and bus networks through the pandemic.
• Support for Education and skills has now reached £450m following the range of support measures we have implemented.
• This is being funded through £2.6 billion of Barnett consequentials and £745 million of reprioritisation of existing expenditure.
All three of these budget revisions have been approved by the Scottish Parliament following a full scrutiny process by the Finance and Constitution Committee. Final expenditure figures will be published in the Scottish Government's consolidated accounts later this year.
A further £1.1 billion of Covid-19 funding was allocated to the Scottish Government in February 2021, but it was too late to be effectively deployed in the 2020-21 financial year. This was therefore carried forward to 2021-22, and was allocated as part of the Stage 2 and 3 amendments to the Budget Act for 2021-22 alongside further funding for 2021-22 allocated by the UK Government at the Budget in March . This was approved by the Parliament on 9 March and details can be viewed at: Scottish budget 2021 to 2022: amendments after introduction of the Budget (Scotland) (No.5) Bill-gov.scot (www.gov.scot).
Prior to these amendments, the Scottish Government published details of its proposed spending plans, including the allocation of any Covid allocations, for 2021-22 in the Scottish Budget 2021- 22 published on 29 January and available at: Scottish Budget 2021 to 2022 - gov.scot (www.gov.scot).
Decisions on the allocation of any further consequentials will be taken by the next Scottish Government formed following the Scottish election on 6 May.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
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