Ministry of Justice written question – answered on 26th February 2015.

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Photo of Chi Onwurah Chi Onwurah Shadow Minister (Cabinet Office)

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what progress has been made in publishing a new Code of Practice for Freedom of Information which apply to services delivered by external providers.

Photo of Simon Hughes Simon Hughes The Minister of State, Ministry of Justice

We have previously made clear our intention to issue a revised Code of Practice under section 45 of the Freedom of Information Act (‘FOI Act’). I regret that it will not now be possible to bring forward the Code of Practice during this parliamentary session as we had previously intended.

However, we do recognise the challenge which the outsourcing of public services poses for transparency. It is our wish that public authorities and their contractors should interpret their FOI obligations broadly, in a way which applies as high a level of transparency as possible, and takes due regard of the principles for public authorities required by the FOI Act. This is one of the reasons why, outside the context of the FOI Act, all central Government contracts over £10,000 have been published on Contracts Finder since 2011.

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