Publication - FOI/EIR release

Signed legal agreement with Ernst & Young: FOI release

Published: 23 Sep 2021

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

Published:
23 Sep 2021
Signed legal agreement with Ernst & Young: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/202100227936
Date received: 4 Aug 2021
Date responded: 1 Sep 2021
Information requested

A copy of the signed legal agreement between the Scottish Government and Ernst & Young regarding due diligence on the Lochaber Guarantee & Reimbursement Agreement. If not included within the agreement, please supply the contract value and the scope of the work (including any limitations).

Response

Attached is a copy of most of the information requested. The scope of the work carried out can be found in Supporting Document one.

You have also asked for the contract value. The Scottish Government publishes details of all its expenditures over £25,000 each month at the following webpage: https://www.gov.scot/collections/government-spend-over-gbp25000-monthly-reports/#2016. Under section 25(1) of FOISA, we do not have to give you information which is already reasonably accessible to you.

While our aim to provide information where possible, in this instance exemptions apply under section 33(1)(b) FOISA (commercial interests) and section 38(1)(b) FOISA (personal information). The reasons why those exemptions apply is explained in Annex A. 

ANNEX A
REASONS FOR NOT PROVIDING INFORMATION


An exemption under section 33(1)(b) FOISA (commercial interests) applies to some of the information requested. This exemption applies because disclosure of this particular information would, or would be likely, to prejudice substantially the commercial interests of the commercial entities involved.

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 public interest in disclosing information as part of open and transparent government and to help to account for the expenditure of public money. However, there is a greater public interest in protecting the commercial interests of companies which enter into contract with the Scottish Government, to ensure that we are always able to obtain the best value for public money.

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it contains personal details of individuals.

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 apply the exemption.

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