Publication - FOI/EIR release

Scottish Government funded worldwide properties: FOI release

Published: 8 Feb 2021

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

Published:
8 Feb 2021
Scottish Government funded worldwide properties: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202000114270
Date received: 20 Nov 2020
Date responded: 21 Dec 2020
Information requested

You asked for:

Part 1:
a. In how many UK Government owned / rented properties (excluding UK) worldwide has the Scottish Government & other Scottish Government funded / financed public bodies / quangos – a presence?
b. How many & at what cost are financed directly by Scottish Government & other Scottish public bodies / quangos?
c. Cost of premises including rent’s & utilities broken down by country?
d. How many personnel are employed?
e. Nationality of personnel by country?
f. What is the cost broken down by country?
g. How many have diplomatic credentials?
h. What is the official title & address of all locations above?

Part 2:
a. In how many Scottish Government owned / rented properties (excluding UK) worldwide has the Scottish Government & other Scottish Government funded / financed public bodies / quangos – a presence?
b. How many & at what cost are directly financed by Scottish Government & other Scottish public bodies / quangos?
c. Cost of premises including rent’s & utilities broken down by country?
d. How many personnel are employed?
e. Nationality of personnel by country?
f. What is the cost broken down by country?
g. How many have diplomatic credentials?
h. What is the official title & address of all locations above?

Response

The Scottish Government does not hold (for the purposes of FOISA) information pertaining to other bodies such as other "public bodies/quangos" . This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested.

However, you may wish to contact the specific organisation or public body, who may be able to help you. As such, your request has been responded to on the basis of the information you have asked for as it pertains to the Scottish Government only.

In relation to Parts 1a and 1c of your request, the Scottish Government have 6 offices which are located within UK Government buildings, the locations and number of personnel employed in these offices is listed below:

Country (City)               

Staff Numbers             

Canada (Ottawa)

3

China (Beijing)

4

France (Paris)

3

Germany (Berlin)

3

Republic of Ireland (Dublin)      

3

USA (Washington DC)

4

In relation to Parts 1b and 1f of your request, some of the information you have requested is available from the Scottish Parliament website at: https://www.parliament.scot/FinancialScrutiny/2020-21_Budget_Level_4.xlsx. Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

For the Berlin and Dublin Offices, these budgets are part or a higher level budget line that is not disaggregated to this level of detail. Therefore the figures for these offices are below:

Country (City)                    

2020-21 Budget
£m                                       

Germany (Berlin)

0.549

Republic of Ireland (Dublin)   

0.572

You may be interested to know that the Scottish Government's proposed spending and tax plans are published on the Scottish Government’s website. Plans for 2020 to 2021, published on 6 February 2020: https://www.gov.scot/budget/

In relation to Part 1d of your request, the Scottish Government pay an annual charge to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) to enable these six offices to be based within their buildings. For this financial year 2020-21, the Scottish Government paid £48,000 to the FCDO for that charge.

In relation to Part 1e and Part 2e of your request, while our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested. This is a formal notice under section 17(1) of FOISA that the Scottish Government does not have the information you have requested. This is because checks are made at the time of recruitment to ensure that candidates meet the Civil Service nationality rules however, in line with GDPR, the Scottish Government does not retain this information after the time of recruitment.

In relation to Part 1g and Part 2g of your request, all Scottish Government permanent staff, who are ordinarily UK-based, serving in overseas offices have diplomatic status. For Belgium this applies to 11 members of staff. To reduce the risk of identifying individuals and protect personal data, figures based on between one and four people are suppressed.

In relation to Part 1h and Part 2h of your request, the information you have requested is available from the Scottish Government's website at: https://www.gov.scot/policies/international-relations/

Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

In relation to Part 2a of your request, the Scottish Government has a presence in 1 Scottish Government leased property in Brussels, Belgium.

In relation to Parts 2b, 2c and 2f of your request, the Scottish Government’s contribution to the cost of rent and utilities for Scotland House Brussels in financial year 2019-2020 was £201,103.12. The Scottish Government shares this space with other Scottish partners including Scotland Europa, Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Development International. The cost of running the Scottish Government’s office in Brussels (not including the Scottish Government’s contribution towards the cost of rent and utilities) is available from the Scottish Parliament website at: https://www.parliament.scot/FinancialScrutiny/2020-21_Budget_Level_4.xlsx

Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

In relation to Part 2d, there are currently 19 members of Scottish Government staff based in the Brussels office (11 of whom are ordinarily UK-based and 8 of whom are locally engaged).

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 Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG