THE Scottish Government has warned the nation could be set to miss out on hundreds of millions of pounds if the UK Government breaks its promise to match EU funding post-Brexit.

The Tory government has already been accused of a “straightforward breach” of a manifesto pledge by the Welsh administration after it announced just £400 million in funding to replace the £1.5 billion that would have come from the EU in 2022.

Westminster’s “Shared Prosperity Fund”, brought in to replace lost EU structural funding, is due to rise to £700m in 2023-2024, and finally to £1.5bn in 2024-25.

The Scottish Government said that this funding is due to be released in April, but as yet no details of funding for Scotland have been forthcoming.

A cross-party report from the Treasury Committee estimated a 40% reduction on the amount the UK received under EU structural funds from 2014 to 2020.

“If the new fund is intended to be one of ‘the centrepieces’ of the Government’s ambition, it is surprising that the size of the fund is being reduced to such an extent,” the committee wrote.

Employment Minister Richard Lochhead said: “Since the UK’s departure from the EU, businesses and communities across Scotland have lost out on vital funding delivered by EU structural funds. That is why the Scottish Government has repeatedly pressed the UK Government to provide clarity on how the missing millions will be replaced.

“We estimate that at least £183 million each year is required if the UK Government is to deliver its promise to match Scotland’s lost EU funding, but the Levelling Up White Paper fails to provide any answers and we fear the SPF will fall short.

“While UK Ministers say the Levelling Up agenda will help empower all parts of the UK, the reality is the Scottish Government has not been consulted, nor have Scottish Ministers had any role in investment proposals or decisions that are devolved to the Scottish Parliament. New guidance on the SPF offers no evidence of respecting devolution or acknowledging the Scottish Government as an equal partner.

“We expect the UK Government to provide a fair and equal share of funding that fully replaces EU support, as UK Ministers have pledged to do. Anything less would be unacceptable and Levelling Up will mean losing out.”

A UK Government spokesperson said: “The UK Shared Prosperity Fund will at least match receipts from EU structural funds, which on average reached around £1.5 billion per year. Local areas will continue to spend investment from EU structural funds until the end of 2023.

“We are also investing £1.7 billion in projects to level up communities across Scotland, including £20 million from the Levelling Up Fund to build a new market in the heart of Aberdeen’s city centre, and £20 million to regenerate local infrastructure in Dumbarton.