Voluntary Application: Scottish Fiscal Commission

The Scottish Fiscal Commission is responsible for producing independent forecasts of tax revenues, expenditure on social security and on-shore Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for Scotland. It is not considered an official statistics producer; however, it has made an active choice to apply the Code wherever possible.

It reviewed its approaches to producing and publishing analysis against the three pillars of Trustworthiness, Quality and Value (TQV) and considered how it was already meeting the principles within the Code and what could be improved upon.

The majority of Code principles were already being followed within the Commission, in line with its responsibilities as an independent fiscal institution. However, setting out its commitment to voluntarily applying the Code in a clear statement on its website, using the TQV framework, allowed it to demonstrate its independence. Furthermore, by being transparent about its methods and quality assurance, as well as the limitations and the judgements made within its forecasts, it has encouraged trust in the value of its outputs. Building this trust is essential to meet its users’ need for independent scrutiny of the Government’s budget and to inform debate. You can find out more about the Commission’s approach in this blog.

The Commission included a commitment to continue to develop its approaches in line with the best practice outlined in the Code. It has already taken additional steps through starting to pre-announce forthcoming publications up to a year in advance, ensuring all data are released in a reusable format, and by publishing its approach to corrections and revisions.