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SNP looks to reform Scottish tax rates

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SNP looks to reform Scottish tax rates

The Scottish National Party (SNP) has pledged to work with rival parties to reform the tax system in Scotland. 

Speaking at the party conference in Glasgow, SNP finance secretary Derek Mackay said his party recognised the need to  'build a tax system that meets the needs of the country' by working with other parties on a discussion paper. 

'Setting taxes isn't easy. Taxation isn't a toy - it has an impact on people's lives and their choices and as a government, we take that responsibility very seriously.

'As part of this process, and recognising that Holyrood is a Parliament of minorities, I wrote to all the party leaders asking them to set out their tax proposals for inclusion in this paper.'

However, he revealed that only Patrick Harvie, co-convener of the Scottish Green Party, and Willie Rennie, leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, had responded.

First minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon revealed plans to publish a discussion paper on income tax in a speech last month. This came after she made a number of spending promises, including looking to raise the 1% cap on public sector wage increases. 

At the time Sturgeon said she was 'open minded' about raising income tax levels for high earners. 

Investment in Scotland

Mackay also outlined the Scottish government's plans to introduce a new National Investment Bank.

He told the conference: 'We will address the issue of the lack of long term, patient capital with the delivery of a new National Investment Bank. A bank that will act, not with the short term focus on bonuses and dividends, but one that will act purely in the national interest.'

Mackay also said the SNP would continue its efforts to boost exports and the internationalisation of the Scottish economy, opening 'investment and innovation hubs' in Paris and Brussels, along with those already opened in London, Dublin and soon Berlin.

In addition, Mackay announced the launch of a new economic development agency for the south of Scotland, similar to the existing Highlands and Islands enterprise, to deliver economic progress to remote areas.

 

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