Briefings sent to the First Minister, Deputy First Minister, and Cabinet Secretary for Finance: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004.

Information requested

Under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), I would like to request the following information:

  • All correspondence regarding my Freedom of Information request submitted 31st March 2022 and given the reference 202200291705/4827.

For reference I have included your original FoI request dated 31 March 2022. I would like to request the following information under the Freedom of Information Scotland Act 2002 (FOISA):

  • All correspondence and documentation sent between the Minister for Transport and Islands and Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure, Investment, and Cities between 7th and 9th October 2015 including attachments regarding the CMAL contract for vessels 801/802.

All briefings sent to the First Minister, Deputy First Minister, and Cabinet Secretary for Finance and the Constitution between the 7th and 10th October 2015 regarding the CMAL contract for vessels 801/802. I will expect the response within 20 working days - 28th April 2022 - as outlined in FOISA.


In scope information is attached in Annex A.

As the information you have requested is ‘environmental information’ for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.

This exemption is subject to the ‘public interest test’. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.

Due to the voluminous numbers of Freedom of Information/Environmental Impact Requests received at a similar time on the same topic, namely the process and authorisation of contracts for vessels 801/802, following the publication of the Audit Scotland Report (New vessels for the Clyde and Hebrides (auditscotland. your original response has been regrettably delayed.

For your information following receipt of a Freedom of Information request due diligence is carried out in the terms of searches of locally and electronically held information which may be caught by a request. These searches are detailed and include relevant keywords to ensure that all information in scope of a request are found. The searches relating to your original request captured some 4,000 potential emails/documents and as such these had to be checked to ensure that all in scope information was properly identified. This was a lengthy and time consuming process.

As such only limited correspondence regarding your case, as per Annex A, was generated between the time of your original request (31 March 2022) and the date you submitted your request for review (19 May 2022).

I note that you have still to receive a response to 202200291705 which should issue presently.

I apologise again for the delay in these responses reaching you.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

Annex A and B - 202200301007


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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