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SNP Proposes Tax Devolution for Scotland’s Fiscal Future

Published by Prerana
Posted Date: June 23, 2024 , Modified Date: June 21, 2024

The Scottish National Party (SNP) has revealed a plan to take full control of tax powers in Scotland, including national insurance and VAT. SNP leader and First Minister John Swinney emphasised the party's commitment to ending austerity and implementing a fairer tax system at the manifesto launch.

What Does Full Tax Devolution Mean for Scotland?

Full tax devolution would let the Scottish government control all aspects of taxation, including setting rates and thresholds for national insurance and VAT. This shift would allow Scotland to adjust its tax policies to fit its economic and social needs better.

  • National Insurance - The SNP wants to adjust national insurance to match Scotland's income tax system. This could mean people in Scotland contribute to National Insurance based on their income, potentially reducing the financial burden on those with lower incomes.
tax devolution
  • VAT - Scotland could have the power to change VAT rates for different industries. For example, the SNP wants to reduce VAT for hospitality and tourism to meet the specific needs of these sectors and boost economic growth. Also, changes in VAT could help environmental efforts by eliminating VAT on electric vehicle charging and promoting the renovation of existing buildings through favourable tax treatments.

How Will These Changes Impact Public Services and the Economy?

The SNP's manifesto outlines several ways in which full tax devolution could benefit public services and the economy:

  • NHS Investment - The SNP promises to invest more money in Scotland's National Health Service (NHS) by having more control over tax revenues. This could help improve healthcare services and reduce waiting times for patients.
  • Cost of Living and Climate Change - The SNP suggests implementing a windfall tax on companies that are making significant profits. The goal is to tackle the issues of high living costs and climate change. The money raised from this tax would be used to support public services and fund environmental projects.
  • Tax Fairness and Transparency - The SNP aims to make sure that international companies pay their fair share of taxes in Scotland by cracking down on tax avoidance and evasion. This will make the tax system more transparent and fairer, potentially leading to increased trust in government policies.


The SNP is pushing for full tax devolution, seeing it as essential for achieving the democratic aspirations of the Scottish people and addressing unique challenges. This vision for an independent Scotland is sparking significant debate and influencing discussions about Scotland's future and its relationship with the UK government. The party's ability to secure a majority and navigate the complex path to full devolution and potential independence will determine the fate of these ambitious plans.

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