Government Departments: Evening Standard

Cabinet Office written question – answered on 25th April 2017.

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Photo of Clive Lewis Clive Lewis Labour, Norwich South

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much the Government spent on advertising in the Evening Standard newspaper in the last financial year for which information is available.

Photo of Chris Skidmore Chris Skidmore Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Cabinet Office)

Holding answer received on 24 March 2017

In the full 2015/16 financial year, government spending on advertising in the Evening Standard newspaper totalled £297,037 (spending on print advertising and digital advertising where it was bought directly). This equated to approximately 0.22% of all media buying for government advertising in that financial year.

I am aware of the comments that the Hon. Member has made in the media on the appointment of the new editor of the Evening Standard. I would note that any spending on advertising is in line with the Government Communication Service’s Propriety Guidance. In addition, departmental Accounting Officers have a particular responsibility for the propriety of using public resources for advertising, as well as for the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of their use. The resources employed should be proportional to the objectives or policy of the programme involved and justifiable on value-for-money grounds. I believe this provides an appropriate system of checks to avoid any conflict of interest and ensure taxpayers’ money is properly spent.

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