CIPFA outlines impact on Scottish public finances after no vote


CIPFA has responded to the historic referendum vote on Scottish Independence.

Reacting to the no vote, Don Peebles, Head of CIPFA Scotland said:

‘This is a significant day for Scotland and the Scottish people. While the people of Scotland have decided to stay as part of the UK, they have also voted for a massive change to the constitutional settlement.  The exact nature of that change has yet to be fully emerge.  CIPFA is ready however to lend its expertise and to take a leadership role in ensuring that the new public financial management system is fit for purpose for a modern Scotland.

‘As new powers over taxation and spending are given to Scotland it must be acknowledged that neither the Scottish nor UK Government has a true picture of the financial situation of Scotland or a clear idea of what assets or liabilities it holds.

‘This lack of information was highlighted in CIPFA’s call for a balance sheet for Scotland in our report earlier in the year and even though the UK will remain intact, it is important that the opportunity is taken to modernise the current financial management system. 

‘This hard reality must now focus the minds of all involved to build a concise and much needed picture of Scotland’s true financial position if it is to successfully manage its new powers within the United Kingdom.

‘If we are to find a constructive way across this constitutional watershed openness and clarity about liabilities and assets must be at the heart of the process.

‘CIPFA will lead this process by bringing together key financial management experts to advise government on the necessary steps forward.’

In June this year CIPFA produced its ground breaking report The Scottish Referendum: Scotland’s future in the balance which addressed tough questions around the future financing of Scotland. If you would like a PDF version of the report please email:


Contact: Matthew Patterson/Nick Walton, CIPFA Press Office

T: 020 7543 5787

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