Scottish election 2021: Scottish Greens say ‘millionaires’ should have cash and assets hit with extra 1% ‘wealth tax’

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SCOTLAND’S “millionaires” should have all their cash and assets hit with an extra one per cent “wealth tax” every year, the Greens have said.

The pro-indy left-wingers Holyrood manifesto also vowed to slap a levy on “frequent flyers” – with one flight a year free of the new tax, then rising charges for every extra trip.


The Greens have launched their manifestoCredit: The Sun

The party said its “millionaires tax” on the “wealthiest 10 per cent of Scots” was needed to “tackle the profound structural economic inequality that holds back the economy”.

The Greens define a millionaire as anyone with “wealth” above £1million, including “property, land, pensions, and other assets”.

And the eco-aware party also set out plans for the “international frequent flyer levy”, with soaring carbon emissions from flights blamed chiefly on “leisure travel by the wealthy”.

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The manifesto said: “Every passenger in Scotland will pay nothing for their first return flight in a 12-month period, with the levy incrementally rising for each additional flight after that. This would not apply to domestic flights linking the Highlands and Islands to the rest of the country.”

It is unclear from the manifesto if the Greens want the “international” levy to apply to flights to the rest of the UK, but the party also backs independence.

Quizzed at the launch event in Glasgow, Green co-leader Patrick Harvie said that despite sharing a belief in indy, he would not be willing to work with Alex Salmond or his new Alba Party.

Asked directly, he said: “No, we wouldn’t and I don’t expect him to be in parliament anyway.”

Five key policies from Greens manifesto

  • Invest £7.5billion in public transport and renewables – including doubling the size of the wind sector – to tackle climate change and create “over 100,000 green jobs”.
  • Provide a “new deal for workers” by transitioning to a four-day week – with no loss in pay – and raising the minimum wage.
  • Boost teacher numbers by 5,500 to help reduce class sizes to a max of 20, while also raising the school-age to seven with a “kindergarten stage” for three to six-year-olds.
  • Hold IndyRef2 within the next Holyrood term – and consider any refusal by Boris Johnson as not “politically sustainable” and potentially “subject to legal challenge”.
  • Tax the wealthy – including a “millionaire’s tax”, a levy on frequent flyers overseas and a one-off windfall tax on the profits made by big companies during the pandemic.

The party’s manifesto – the first to be published of the main Holyrood parties – acknowledges UK Government consent would be required to launch its millionaires tax.

Mr Harvie said: “Let’s be really clear – it’s not a tax on aspiring to have wealth, it’s a tax on having wealth.

“We’re a society where a huge amount of the wealth that is generated by all of us is collectively is hoarded by a tiny number of people and it’s simply not a sustainable way for our economy to move forward.”

Speaking alongside Holyrood veteran Mr Harvie, the other Green co-leader Lorna Slater – an engineer standing to be an MSP for the first time – slammed the “disinterest” of world governments in tackling the climate crisis.

She vowed her party would push to build a “world-leading renewables industry” and would “not duck the tough decisions when it comes to fossil fuels”.

Mr Salmond hit back to blast the Greens as “weak as water on the constitution”.

The Alba leader added: “Nicola Sturgeon says a referendum may not be held until after 2023, the Greens are now saying a referendum may be held as late as 2026.”

NICOLA Sturgeon has announced changes to Scotland’s lockdown restrictions on travel and socialising from this Friday.

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