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Response to GERS queries - BBC

Q: What is the value of BBC revenue and expenditure allocated to Scotland? How are these calculated?

A: The tables below set out estimated revenue and expenditure associated with the BBC.

Note that the following figures exclude revenue and expenditure associated with the BBC’s commercial services, associated with e.g. overseas sales of BBC programmes. This part of the BBC is treated separately within the UK Public Sector Finances. As it is viewed as a self-financing body, only its net position is included, with its revenues and expenditure not reported separately.

(a) Revenue

GERS includes TV licences paid by households within the revenue category ‘Other taxes, royalties, and adjustments’. This is a smaller figure than the licence fee income as reported by the BBC in their annual accounts, as the BBC includes income from the Department for Work and Pension (DWP), which pays the TV licences of over 75s. For reference, both figures are shown below.

Estimated BBC licence fee income from Scottish households (£m)

2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15
From households (source: GERS) 274 278 275 278 279
From DWP (source: DWP) 48 49 49 49 49
Total estimated BBC revenue from Scottish households 322 327 325 327 328

As TV licences are paid by households rather than individuals, Scotland’s share of TV licences from under 75s is estimated based on its share of UK households, available from the Department for Communities and Local Government:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/live-tables-on-household-projections (Live Table 401)

Scotland’s share of TV licences from over 75s is taken from DWP benefit expenditure tables:


(b) Expenditure

Scotland’s share of BBC expenditure within GERS is  available from the GERS 2014-15 expenditure database and is shown in the table below. This is apportioned to Scotland on a population basis as it aims to represent the spending by the BBC for the benefit of residents of Scotland. This does not represent total BBC spending in Scotland.

Estimated BBC expenditure for Scotland (£m)

  2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15
BBC expenditure for Scotland 338 299 300 305 324