First Ministers Questions on 30th November 2023: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

You asked for any information held by the Scottish Government which explains the inconsistency between these two statements;

At FMQs on 30th November 2023, the Deputy First Minister, Shona Robison, said this:

I said what I said at the beginning about Douglas Ross’s priorities because he has had nothing to say about a Tory Chancellor of the Exchequer’s autumn statement that has given no money whatsoever to this Government or this country for our public services for next year. I think that the public are pretty concerned about that, because it will impact on every part of the public sector across Scotland. If the Tories do not care about that, the Scottish National Party certainly does.

The following information was published by HM Treasury on 22nd November 2023:

As a result of decisions at the Autumn Statement, the devolved administrations are receiving over £1 billion in additional funding through the Barnett formula over 2023-24 and 2024-25. The Scottish Government is receiving £545 million, the Welsh Government £305 million, and the Northern Ireland Executive £185 million.


Your query references the fact that the Scottish Government is receiving £545m of additional funding through the Barnett formula over 2023-24 and 2024-25. Of the £545m, £320m relates to 2024-25, what the Deputy First Minister has referred to as next year. The overwhelming majority of that £320m relates to tax reduction measures – specifically on business rates.

The full breakdown of the £320m is set out below, with the first three measures all relating to business rates;


SG (£m) 24-25

Freezing the small business multiplier for 2024-2025


Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Relief in for 2024-25


Business Rates: New Burdens Funding


Apprenticeship pilot in growth sectors


NHS Talking Therapies expansion


Individual Placement and Support (IPS) for Severe Mental Illness expansion


Smokefree generation


Local Authority Housing Fund


Housing Package


Restart: expand eligibility and extend the scheme for two years


Post-Restart employment schemes, including Mandatory Work Placements: phased rollout


Claimant review point


Fit note reform trial


Flexible Fund for victims of domestic abuse



The balance of consequential funding that relates to public services is £57 million. This represents 0.13% of the total Block Grant funding after the Autumn Statement of £43.1 billion. After allowing for the effect of inflation the 2024-25 Block Grant is lower in real terms than the level of UK government funding for 2022-23. These figures form the backdrop against which the Deputy First Minister made her remarks in the chamber.

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