Plans to publish the Welsh Government’s Draft Budget 2016-17 shortly after the Spending Review announced
Finance and Government Business Minister Jane Hutt has confirmed that the Welsh Government’s Draft Budget 2016-17 will be published on 8 December 2015.
Despite the significant challenges faced as a result of the late timing of the UK Government’s Spending Review, the Welsh Government will publish its spending plans for next year within two weeks of knowing its settlement - providing early clarity on future spending plans for delivery partners across Wales, including local authorities and health bodies.
The Finance Minister also confirmed that the Final Budget for 2016-17 will be published on 1 March.
Finance Minister said:
“The late timing of the UK Government’s Spending Review means we will not know our Budget for 2016-17 until 25 November and makes the challenge of managing the impact of further austerity even greater. We are facing unprecedented levels of uncertainty which makes planning our own Budget exceptionally difficult.
“In setting our Budgets it has always been a priority to provide early certainty for our partners on our future spending plans. This is key for local authorities, the NHS and third sector organisations. It is also essential that we allow sufficient time for the Assembly to complete meaningful scrutiny of our spending plans. This is an almost impossible task given the late timing of the Spending Review.”
“However, staying true to our commitment to provide early certainty, I’m pleased to be able to announce that we will publish the Draft Budget 2016-17 on 8 December and the Final Budget on 1 March. This timescale will be challenging but will enable local authorities and other delivery partners to finalise their spending plans and means a Budget can be set for the people of Wales before the end of this financial year, providing financial certainty and stability in these difficult times.”
The Finance Minister also confirmed that in light of the lack of clarity provided on the UK Government‘s plans for future years, coupled with the challenging timescales presented as a result of the late Spending Review, the Welsh Government will publish plans for 2016-17 only.
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