Publication - FOI/EIR release

Loans to third parties: loan agreements: FOI release

Published: 18 Oct 2018

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Published:
18 Oct 2018
Loans to third parties: loan agreements: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/18/02623
Date received: 13 September 2018  
Date responded: 17 October 2018
 
Information requested
 

You asked for a copy of the loan agreements (or if not produced, a similar document setting out the basis of the loan) for each of the following:

Loan  (reference numbers in brackets are as those stated in the appendix to FOI/18/02172).


(2) £133.2 million @0% interest, due within 1 year

(3) £39.5 million @0% interest, due within 1 year

(31) £7.89 million @ 4.22% interest, 11 year term

(32) £48.2 million @0.10% interest, 25 year term

(34) £15 million @15% interest, payment at end of loan.

 

Response
 

I enclose a copy of most of the information you requested.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested because exemptions under section(s) s30(c) (prejudice to the conduct of public affairs), s33(1)(b) (substantial prejudice to commercial interests), s38(1)(b) (personal information) of FOISA applies to that information.  The reasons why those exemptions apply are explained below.

Reasons for not providing information

An exemption applies.

An exemption under section 38(1) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested, because it consists in the personal information (names, contact details) of employees of the Scottish Government or of the contracting bodies.

This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. 

An exemption applies, subject to the public interest test.

An exemption under section 30(c) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested. This exemption applies to information whose disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the effective conduct of public affairs. This exemption is applied to information whose release would risk significantly reducing the Government’s ability to provide support to industry because potential applicants would not have confidence in the ability of Government to protect their commercial interests.

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. We recognise that there is some public interest in release because loan arrangements should be as transparent as possible. However, this is outweighed by the public interest in protecting the Government’s capacity appropriately to provide support to businesses where this is justified by the public interest in maintaining economic activity and employment.

An exemption under section 33(1)(b) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested. This exemption applies to information whose disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice substantially the commercial interests of the loan recipients. This exemption applies to information whose release could hinder those companies from continuing to operate successfully in the commercial environment they’re in through the release of commercially sensitive details of their operation and the nature of support they are receiving.

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. We recognise that there is some public interest in release because loan arrangements should be as transparent as possible. However, this is outweighed by the public interest in ensuring that the purpose for which the loan(s) is made is not undermined by releasing information which worsens their commercial position.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit 
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

 
The Scottish Government 
St Andrew's House 
Regent Road 
Edinburgh 
EH1 3DG