Transport: Finance

Department for Transport written question – answered on 7th October 2019.

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Photo of Jo Stevens Jo Stevens Labour, Cardiff Central

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate he has made of the amount of money spent from the public purse on transport per head of population in (a) Wales, (b) England and (c) Scotland.

Photo of Chris Heaton-Harris Chris Heaton-Harris Minister of State (Department for Transport)

Figures on public sector expenditure at a national level are part of the Government’s Country and Regional Analysis (CRA) statistics.

The statistics include spend on transport by all public sector organisations including the Department for Transport, Local Authorities, Public Corporations (in the case of transport, this is mainly spend by London Underground) and other government departments including devolved administrations.

Please note that much of the responsibility for transport in Wales and, in particular Scotland, is devolved to the Welsh and Scottish administrations. For example, responsibility for strategic roads and local roads in Wales is devolved to the Welsh Government and Welsh local authorities respectively, who are therefore responsible for related funding decisions.

When comparing expenditure across regions a number of factors should be considered. For example, when expenditure is presented on a “per head of population” basis, it does not account for the pressure that large numbers of commuters and visitors from outside of a region can add to the transport networks. In addition, larger built-up areas tend to make greater use of mass public transport systems, and these will generate fares income which contributes to their operating costs.

Table 1: Public expenditure on all transport, by all public sector bodies in 2017-18 (£ per head of population)

(a) Wales


(b) England


(c) Scotland


Source: Table A.15 -

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