Pandemic pushes government spending to £56.35 billion

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THE ongoing coronavirus pandemic has pushed government spending to £56.3 billion, a new budget update confirms today.

All £8.6 billion of consequential funding guaranteed to the Scottish Government for 2020-21 has been allocated to tackling the pandemic

The Spring Budget, which has been published online, details a further £2.5 billion of coronavirus spending since September.

Government spending - Business News Scotland
Government spending has been pushed to £56.3 billion

This includes £780 million for business support, taking the total to more than £3 billion in the current financial year, and an additional £494 million to health and sport, while £745 million has been reprioritised within existing budgets to help deal with the impact of COVID-19.

During the year, the Scottish Government has also deployed a total of £100 million of resource and capital funding from the Scotland Reserve.

Finance Secretary Kate Forbes said:

“The SBR highlights once again the enormous economic impact of the global pandemic, which reaches into every area of spending and continues to stretch our resources.

“It confirms that every penny received by the Scottish Government to tackle COVID-19 has been channelled to where it is needed most.”