Patrick Harvie MSP responds to UK Chancellor’s Autumn Statement

12 Tax Dodgers of Xmas

by Patrick Harvie MSP

“George Osborne continues to wage his war on reality, creating ever greater poverty and inequality in our society and backing the wrong fuel for our energy needs and climate targets. The gigantic real-terms cut in benefits for the poorest in Scotland will cut some incomes to levels of complete destitution, with food and fuel poverty levels pushed to desperate new highs.”


“Some of the wealthiest companies in the country will be laughing all the way to the bank, raising a glass to the Tories who have just cut their taxes even further. Soon they’ll stop needing to bother dodging their tax bills, because Osborne will have stopped bothering to send one.

“The Chancellor is late to react to the utter public outrage felt towards top brands who avoid tax. More tax staff and rule changes are welcome, but in an age where reputation is everything, we should be naming and shaming high-profile offenders.”


“Backing a new generation of gas is an utterly reckless action. The Tory wind-farm bashers are having too much fun to stop undermining climate change policy now, and the Government’s top adviser on the climate has thrown up his hands in despair. Just four years after the UK Climate Act, the Coalition is doing its best to unstitch the deal.”


“Scottish values are clearly different from those of the UK Coalition and it would be foolish to pin hopes on a future Labour government reversing the damage that has been done. It increasingly makes sense for Scotland to decide its own priorities, so we can protect the vulnerable in society and foster a sustainable economy.”

Categories: Economics, Environmental Justice, Tax Justice


3 replies

  1. Here’s a few more responses, including from Richard Murphy, advisor to Tax Justice Network, and trade union leader, Mark Serwotka.

  2. John Swinney’s response (this is from BBC Scotland website):

    Mr Swinney told BBC Scotland that the chancellor’s move to cut corporation tax to 21% by April 2014 was a “welcome step”.

    But he said Mr Osborne was unable to rival the Scottish government’s “competitive position” on business rates. He said: “We have the most competitive regime for business rates anywhere in the UK that is why we are topping the league of inward investment.”

    He added: “After two-and-a-half years in office the chancellor has finally heeded Scotland’s calls to boost capital spending. The steps he has taken are welcome but they only take us halfway towards common sense in terms of investment and there is still a lack of a coherent plan to return the economy to growth.

    “This allocation of funding is only recovering some of the ground from the unprecedented cuts already imposed on Scotland over the last few years which have seen our budget cut by 33% in real terms. These latest announcements show that the cut in our capital budget is now 25.9%.”

    Mr Swinney said he would “confirm shortly” what projects would benefit from the extra cash.

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