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To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Sugg on 21 February (HL13574), what they have spent or committed, in staff, consultancy and other costs, on work related to the procurement exercise to secure additional freight capacity after Brexit; and what assessment they have made of the impact on such costs of the approach to nine companies and the award to only three.
Combined costs of external legal, financial and project assurance advice on all three freight contracts including legal advice up to the end of December 2018 were approximately £800,000. Subsequent costs cannot yet be derived as contracts are still live and invoices pending.
Preliminary discussions with the wider set of nine operators, to assess market appetite and help secure value for money, were undertaken as part of the Department’s broader Maritime EU Exit work, and could not accurately be disaggregated without disproportionate cost; no external consultancy costs were incurred in this exercise.