To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, pursuant to the Answer of 27 November 2018 to Question 190943, for what reasons that answer did not specify the number of non-disclosure agreements his Department has with private sector organisations; and if he will make available to hon. Members information on (a) the number of and (b) which companies have entered into such non-disclosure agreements.
I refer the Hon. Member to the answer given on 27 November to PQ 190943. The Government has non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) with some private sector organisations. Confidentiality requirements are a common element of contractual obligations and are used by departments to protect commercial considerations; to reflect the sensitive nature of some discussions; and to facilitate conversations that otherwise may not have been able to take place, due to concerns around sensitive information.
The requested information on the number of NDAs and the companies which have entered into NDAs is not held centrally by Defra and could not be provided without incurring disproportionate cost.