SCOTTISH ministers will agree on Budget details in time for the Finance Secretary's announcement despite ongoing negotiations and an emergency meeting, the First Minister's spokesperson has insisted. 

Humza Yousaf is set to chair an emergency Cabinet meeting on Thursday night as ministers need “more time” to discuss “particularly challenging circumstances”, journalists were told. 

We previously told how ministers are set to hold an extra meeting in Bute House amid concern over the impact of the UK Government’s Autumn Statement.

First Minister Humza Yousaf had aimed to conclude discussions with SNP and Green ministers during the regularly scheduled Cabinet meeting on Tuesday.

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And, it’s understood that discussions could continue through until Monday, when ministers will meet in Haddington on Monday.

At a briefing following FMQs in Holyrood, Yousaf’s spokesperson told journalists: “We're getting close to the Budget being set and we just need to take more time.

“I imagine that there will be a proper discussion in Cabinet on Monday.”

Asked if there had been any disagreements related to issues over setting taxation levels, the spokesperson added: “I mean by definition every year the Budget needs to be agreed by Cabinet collectively, that’s the process every year, but I think this year everyone can see there’s particularly challenging circumstances that we’re facing.

The National:

“We just need more time to consider the issues.”

The spokesperson insisted that further Cabinet meetings ahead of setting the Budget were “not unprecedented”.

Asked if there was any possibility of the Budget being delayed for further considerations to be taken, officials insisted that ministers would reach agreement before the official announcement on December 19.

Deputy First Minister and Finance Secretary Shona Robison will unveil the plans in the Holyrood chamber in a few weeks, with the council tax freeze, announced by the First Minister at the SNP conference, expected to be included.

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Asked if this had been fully costed yet, the FM’s spokesperson said: “We’re still in negotiations, that’s still part of the negotiations going on.”

And on if any of the trade union body STUC’s proposals had sparked the emergency meeting, the spokesperson said there was nothing specific, but that the FM had been engaging with them for some time.

We told how a report from the body called for reform to the council tax system and the introduction of a wealth tax, among other policies, which they say raise £3.7 billion.

 The FM’s spokesperson insisted that Yousaf was still committed to progressive taxation, but would not be drawn on the likelihood of a new higher tax band being introduced.