Rishi Sunak delivers with budget packed with more symbolism than solutions

Rishi Sunak has unveiled his budget in a statement that while full of hyperbole and misdirection will deliver for Scotland.

Chancellor Rishi Sunak delievered his Budget on Wednesday

The Scottish Government is set to get an extra £4.6 billion a year, in the “largest block grants since 1998".Much is made of the UK Government’s handling of Scotland, but it is actions, not words that matter.Nationalists will decry it does not go far enough, but it is inarguable that this Government is trying.

Elsewhere in an hour long address the Chancellor revealed every single department was getting more money than it had last time out.

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Pandemic? What pandemic.

It was a surreal watch, with Mr Sunak repeatedly bragging it was the biggest investment since before 2010, essentially reminding voters his party had underfunded everything since then.

The IFS have already pointed out there has been no growth in 15 years, and spending getting back to 2010 is not something to boast about.

It comes in the aftermath of cutting the Foreign Aid budget, a cut the Chancellor announced is on track to be reversed by 2025.

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Rishi Sunak unveils spending spree with Scottish Government to receive extra £4....

This of course just means it has been confirmed for another year, but saying the world’s poorest will have to wait doesn’t sound as good.

And everything did sound good, with a budget brimming with positivity.

The Universal Credit taper was reduced, which in itself sounds fantastic.

In reality, this will help less than a third of the around six million households hit by the removal of the £20-a-week UC uplift.

There were tax cut in alcohol duties and the customary freezing of fuel duties for motorists, but can you really call something a saving if it's the status quo?

Also not mentioned was the £6 billion council tax bombshell.

And this was the theme of the budget. It sounds good, but in practise does not address the real problems.

The OBR forecasts are promising, and have given the Chancellor the flexibility to spend on such priorities like a £2 million Beatles museum.

With the pandemic still being a thing, growth slowing and inflation still a problem, it will not take much to see an immediate tightening of the belt.


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