BORIS Johnson has pledged to save Britain’s armed forces from the “SNP tax-whack” by making a Treasury tax-break permanent, saving military personnel serving in Scotland as much as £2,200 a year.

After Edinburgh became responsible for tax rates and bands, the Scottish Government began to implement a different tax regime in Scotland, which it insisted was fairer.

However, the Conservatives complained that it meant thousands of soldiers, sailors, marines and airforce personnel based in Scotland faced getting paid less than their contemporaries in the rest of the UK because of what they regarded as the “significantly higher income tax rates” set by Nicola Sturgeon’s administration.

Tory HQ said the SNP had made Scotland the highest taxed part of the UK with everyone earning more than £27,000 having to pay extra income tax. It explained some 45 per cent of Scots, over one million workers, paid more tax than they would if they lived south of the border with someone earning £40,000 paying £130 more tax and someone earning £60,000 £1,644 more.

The tax-break, which costs the Treasury around £4 million a year, was introduced two years ago and has been reviewed and implemented each year since then.

However, the Prime Minister has now as part of the Tory election campaign decided to make the tax-break permanent.

He said: “The SNP hits its citizens with a whack of extra tax every year, meaning all workers can take home less of their hard-earned wages.

“It is not fair that our armed forces based in Scotland should earn less than the personnel they serve alongside in the rest of the country.

“That's why over the past two years we have paid the difference in extra tax so that our service personnel are not penalised for living in Scotland, saving them up to £2,200 each. And now we will go further, ensuring that tax mitigation is permanent, giving certainty to our servicemen and women that they will never have to pay the SNP’s higher taxes.”

Mr Johnson added: “Jeremy Corbyn has made it clear he is willing to negotiate with the SNP to get him into power and turn next year into a jamboree of referendums, one on breaking up the Union and another on Brexit. That’s why we need a majority Conservative Government to end the deadlock in Parliament, get Brexit sorted and spend 2020 focusing on the people’s priorities.”

Last night, Stewart McDonald, the SNP’s defence spokesman, hit back, saying: "This is staggering hypocrisy from the Tories, who have consistently failed our armed forces.

“After a decade of imposing real terms wage cuts, failing to invest in military housing, and missing their recruitment targets, this cynical Tory stunt adds insult to injury,” declared the Nationalists’ candidate for Glasgow South.

He claimed the Tories had shown time and again they could not be trusted to do the right thing by Scotland’s armed forces.

“They have failed to implement SNP calls for wage increases, they've failed to match the SNP's tax cuts for the lowest paid members of the armed forces, and they've failed to accept the SNP's calls for better terms and conditions for serving personnel and their families.

"Every piece of progress the SNP has argued for - on pay, housing, work conditions and funding - the Tories have failed to deliver,” insisted Mr McDonald.

He added: “The SNP will continue to stand up for our armed forces and ensure families in Scotland get the best deal, including lower income tax for thousands of armed forces personnel and the best benefits and services in the UK."