§ Mr. Barker
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many overseas hotel rooms have been booked on behalf of other Government Departments in the last two years; what the total cost was; and how many were not occupied. 
§ Mr. MacShane
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office book a large number of overseas hotel rooms on behalf of other Government Departments, who also make large numbers of overseas hotel bookings directly. In some cases the Foreign and Commonwealth Office meets the costs and then passes the charges onto the Department concerned. In other cases, other Government Departments meet their own costs directly. No central records are held of bookings made, costs or occupancy rates. The answer to this question can therefore be provided only at disproportionate cost.