HUMZA Yousaf has missed First Minister's Questions today (Thursday, December 14) due to an illness.

Deputy First Minister Shona Robison instead took questions at noon from Tory leader Douglas Ross, Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar and other MSPs ahead of the Budget being announced next week.

Yousaf has spent time at COP28 over the last couple of weeks meeting with world leaders. The conference concluded on Wednesday. 

Reports on Thursday morning suggested Yousaf is preparing to announce a new tax band for higher earners in a bid to plug a black hole.

According to The Times, the Scottish Fiscal Commission, which produces forecasts for the Scottish economy, tax receipts and social security spending, was told of the decision last week.

A shortfall of around £1 billion for the 2024-25 financial year was estimated between planned spending and what funding would be available but a number of sources are said to have confirmed the gap is more than £1.5bn.