HC Deb 13 March 2002 vol 381 c1174W
Mr. Bercow

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the total real terms expenditure of his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies on publicity in each of the years(a) 1997–98, (b) 1998–99, (c) 1999–2000, (d) 2000–01 and (e) 2001–02 (i) to date and (ii) as estimated for the whole of the present year; and if he will break these figures down to indicate expenditure on (A) advertising and (B) press and public relations. [36171]

Mr. MacShane

The separately identifiable expenditure by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the categories listed by the hon. Member was:

Expenditure on each category1
Year Advertising Press and public relations Total
1997–98 59,391 59,391
1998–99 1,101,033 16,844 1,117,877
1999–2000 56,877 56,877
2000–01 53,249 223,024 276,273
2000–022 49,581 65,142 114,723
1 In real terms
2 To date

The figures provided represent the expenditure of the FCO and not of Wilton Park, our only agency, or our 10 NDPBs; these details are not held centrally and could not therefore be ascertained without disproportionate effort and cost.

The Government are committed to using only cost effective channels to deliver the publicity necessary to support policy implementation. Paid advertising is only resorted to after careful consideration of the cost benefits. The figures in the table include expenditure on consular publicity but exclude expenditure on advertising for recruitment; identifying this expenditure separately would entail disproportionate effort and cost. The advertising figure for 1998–99 includes £1 million spent on a consular advertising campaign in the run-up to the World Cup 1998 in France. The figures for press and public relations include expenditure on public relations firms as part of FCO information campaigns. In addition to the expenditure identified, there was minor additional expenditure in London and overseas in the years concerned. This cannot be ascertained without disproportionate effort and cost.