In reference to a previous request 202200312240:
“I would argue, however, that given the document references further information about the Longstop Date, I believe the paragraph 9.4 in the linked document should also form part of this disclosure.”
I enclose a response to your request.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance we are unable to provide some of the information you have requested as an exemption under FOISA apply.
An exemption under section 33(1)(b) of FOISA applies to some of the information you have requested because it is likely to prejudice substantially the commercial interests of the parties to the GRA. 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 into 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 to ensure full transparency. However, this is outweighed by the public interest as there is a risk to the companies commercial interests.
I have determined that the application of the exemption at section 33(1)(b) (commercial interests) is appropriate to the information in Clause 9.4 not already released, and withholding of this information is in the public interest. I am satisfied that if this information were released it would negatively impact the business and potentially damage negotiations, day-to-day operations and other activity. Whilst I recognise that there would be some public interest in release of the information in terms of providing greater openness, I consider that this is outweighed by the public interest in ensuring that contractual terms agreed with private sector partners and commercially sensitive information shared between these partners and Government with confidence will be handled with due sensitivity.
I would also like to make you aware that I have been advised by the policy area that this information, along with the rest of the redacted information in the document withheld under the same exemption, is currently being considered for release at appeal by OSIC as a result of a past request and review submitted.
I have provided the link to the original release where this information was initially published for reference -
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.
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
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