Gordon Brown says Scottish pensioners are better off financially in UK

Gordon Brown
Gordon Brown

Scottish pensioners are £409 a year better off in the UK, according to former Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Pensioners in Scotland share £9.58 billion in benefits, including the state pension, pension credits, disability benefit and other advantages.

Gordon Brown

Gordon Brown

This amounts to 8.7% of the UK total spend shared between 8.3% of the British population, providing £417 million more than a division based purely on population would, Mr Brown said.

The former chancellor has divided this total by the 1,020,190 state pensioners in Scotland and found the additional benefit amounts to £409 per pensioner.

He said: “When you include the Scottish share of pensioner benefits paid overseas, Scottish pensioners received a total of £9.58 billion in pensioner benefits. This represents 8.7% of total pensioner benefits across the UK, even though Scotland only has 8.3% of the UK population.

“The pensioner benefit spend in Scotland last year would have been £417 million less had it been based on Scotland’s share of the UK population.

“So before the SNP start making plans for independence they have to find an extra £417 million that we currently receive from being part of the UK.

“I want us to do more and I am determined to fight for a better deal for OAPs including a 20-month freeze on energy prices under a new Labour government.

“But we should remember that under the last Labour government, 200,000 Scottish pensioners were taken out of poverty as pensioner poverty fell from 33% in 1997 to 11% in 2010.

“Before we throw all this away let us remember that the SNP have set up a review into the ‘affordability’ of pensions in an independent Scotland.”