Scotland's First Minister said yesterday he is going to work towards meeting the deadline to arrange an auditor to process the SNP's accounts.

Humza Yousaf's remarks came after the party's Westminster leader acknowledged it could miss out on £1.2million in public funds if the May 31 date for the accounts is missed.

Stephen Flynn could not give any commitment as to whether the deadline would be met.

However, the MP said "everything possible" was being done to ensure this was the case.

Mr Flynn said the party was having problems finding new auditors after the previous company resigned in September.

Accountancy firm Johnston Carmichael, which had worked with the party for more than a decade, said the decision was taken after a review of its clients.


Speaking to the BBC about finding a new auditor, Mr Yousaf said: "It'll be challenging. I won't pretend otherwise.

"There is the ability to ask for an extension if required. We're not in that space yet."

Mr Yousaf has now had his first in-person meeting with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak since taking the role.

The pair met in the House of Commons last night.

The Scottish Government said Mr Yousaf raised concerns around "UK Government attacks on devolution".

The first minister stated that they "got along fine".

Court battle

The meeting took place amid a looming court battle. The Scottish Government has announced plans to launch a legal challenge to Westminster's block on its controversial gender reforms.

The proposals, which would allow people in Scotland to self-identify their sex, were passed by the Scottish Parliament in December last year.

But they were blocked by the UK Government over their potential impact on UK-wide equality laws.

The meeting also came after the Scottish Government delayed the introduction of its deposit-return scheme from August to March next year, in a move that circular economy minister Lorna Slater blamed on Westminster.

She claimed the delay was primarily due to the UK Government not providing an exemption to the Internal Market Act, which was implemented after Britain left the European Union to regulate trade within the country.

Mr Yousaf added: "I did mention to the Prime Minister that where can work together collaboratively of course I would be keen to do that.


"And one way we could do that for example is in relation to the UK Government granting an exemption to the internal market act for the deposit-return scheme."

They also discussed the cost-of-living crisis and rising energy bills, as well as the Scotch whisky industry.

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