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Consultation opens on devolved tax on construction materials

The levy on aggregates would be a devolved tax charged by the Scottish Government (Taylor Wimpey/PA)
The levy on aggregates would be a devolved tax charged by the Scottish Government (Taylor Wimpey/PA)

The Scottish Government is seeking views on a new tax that would aim to incentivise the use of recycled materials in construction.

The Scottish Aggregates Levy will replace the current UK-wide tax, which is payable when newly quarried products are used for commercial purposes.

The current charge is priced at £2 per tonne, having been frozen in 2009 by the UK Government, but the Scottish Government has said it will not lay out its plans for the rate at this stage.

Public finance minister Tom Arthur has said he hoped a new tax would help to boost the circular economy and prompt the use of recycled materials.

“The extraction and production of aggregates like crushed rock and sand creates and supports jobs, including many in our rural communities,”

“However, we know that extraction of new materials can also have an environmental impact.

“These proposals are intended to drive up recycling and reuse rates, helping the construction industry meet its climate and sustainability commitments, and protecting Scotland’s natural environment by reducing the need for virgin materials.

“It will also support our ambitious National Strategy for Economic Transformation objectives for green and sustainable economic growth and result in a greater proportion of the Scottish Budget being directly raised in Scotland.

“I want to ensure this tax is well-designed, takes full account of the Scottish context and maximises opportunities offered by devolution. I would encourage all interested people and organisations to respond to this consultation.”

The change was mentioned in this year’s Programme for Government, with legislation due to be introduced next year and the tax provisionally scheduled to take effect from 2025.

The consultation closed on December 4.