LIZ Truss has urged Nicola Sturgeon to follow the UK Government’s lead on tax cuts- despite the market turmoil sparked by last week’s mini-budget.
The Prime Minister told BBC Scotland she wanted to work with the First Minister to “turbocharge” the Scottish economy.
In the interview, the Tory leader also defended last week’s fiscal event
In seven days since Kwasi Kwarteng announced a series of tax cuts last Friday, the Bank of England has been forced to intervene in the bond market to buy UK Government debt that was collapsing in value.
The costs of government borrowing have soared, with the financial markets expecting the Bank to raise interest rates from 2.25 per cent now to around 6% next year.
The uncertainty over future rates has seen lenders withdraw thousands of mortgage products from the marketplace, causing some home deals to collapse.
Ms Truss said the government had to take “decisive action” because of the dire global crisis sparked by “Putin's war in Ukraine.”
The Prime Minister also said she wanted to ”see more nuclear power stations built across the country including in Scotland”
She added: “I'm very keen to talk to Nicola Sturgeon about that because I think it will help us make sure we have long term energy security that, alongside wind power in Scotland, we also have nuclear power in Scotland.
“But I think there is a fundamental point here about what is happening internationally.
“Internationally, we are seeing interest rates rising in response to Putin's war in Ukraine. and the action we have taken as the UK Government is making sure we are holding people’s energy bills down and we’ve had to borrow to do that and we will get borrowing back on track.”
Ms Truss added: “I am very keen to work with NS to make sure we grow the Scottish economy. Scotland is a country that has fantastic resources and fantastic entrepreneurs. I believe that by improving infrastructure and by reducing taxes we can really turbocharge the Scottish economy.“
Ms Sturgeon made clear during Thursday’s First Minister’s Questions that she would not be following suit.
She told MSPs: “I think that people will listen to the Conservatives calling on the Scottish Government to deliver tax cuts for the richest—and, in so doing, to slash public spending for public services—and wonder what planet they are living on.
“What happened last Friday, in the so-called mini-budget, was economic vandalism, and it was economic vandalism that was done knowingly and, it appears to me, deliberately.”
She added: “The decisions are disastrous and need to be reversed—not because of some political or ideological debate, but for the sake of the homes, the living standards, the pensions and the security of people across this country—-and they need to be reversed now.”