To ask Her Majesty’s Government what was the total cost of the Review of the Balance of Competences between the United Kingdom and the European Union to the Scotland Office and its associated agencies, broken down by (1) staff time, (2) printing costs, (3) running of engagement events, (4) witness expenses, (5) publicity of the reports, and (6) any and all other associated costs.
The Balance of Competences Review concluded in December. It was the most comprehensive analysis of the UK’s relationship with the EU ever undertaken. The Review involved a large number of Departments across Whitehall to produce the 32 reports. The Review was based on the evidence and views received through widespread consultation with interested parties from across society. Across the whole review, departments received close to 2,300 evidence submissions. Departments held over 250 events, attended by around 2,100 stakeholders.
It was important that what is an unprecedented examination of EU membership was done with appropriate time and care. But the government is also very conscious of the need to ensure value for money in everything that it does.
Scotland Office did not lead on one report but fed into work across the Review. In terms of staff time, work on the Review was allocated according to need to existing staff within the Scotland Office. Providing a full breakdown of staff time and costs would exceed the disproportionate cost threshold. Scotland Office did not carry out any work in the other categories set out in the question.