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Publicity

Volume 124: debated on Thursday 17 December 1987

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To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the latest figure for the number of staff presently employed in the press and public realtions office of his Department; and what is the number planned to be employed at this point in 1988.

The number of staff employed in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office news department and Overseas Development Administration press office is 19·5. The number employed at this point in 1988 will depend on the workload prevailing at the time.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the latest figure for the estimated spending in 1987–88 by his Department on (a) television advertising, (b) radio advertising, (c) newspaper advertising and (d) other promotion material; and what are the estimated expenditures in each area for 1988–89.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office estimates of expenditure on advertising and other promotional material for 1987–88 are:

£
FCO Diplomatic Wing195,000
FCO Aid Wing351,000
Total546,000
Detailed decisions on expenditure for 1988–89 have not yet been taken, but the overall figures are expected to be:

£
FCO Diplomatic Wing230,000
FCO Aid Wing352,000
Total582,000
Expenditure relates mainly to advertising for recruitment, publicity to promote overseas the entitlement of certain British residents overseas to vote in British and European Parliament elections, and general promotional literature.A disaggregation of these figures to identify the medium used is not available.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what is the latest figure for the estimated expenditure by his Department on press and public relations for (a) 1987–88 and (b) 1988–89.

Total expenditure on press and public relations for 1987–88 is estimated as follows:

£ million
Payment to Central Office of Information for overseas information material and related activities19·2
Other information services0·9
Running costs of the Diplomatic Wing Information/News Departments2·0
Running costs of Aid Wing Information Department0·2
Detailed decisions on expenditure for 1988–89 have not yet been taken, but the overall figures are expected to be:

£ million
Payment to Central Office of Information for overseas information material and related activities19·0
Other information services0·9
Running costs of the Diplomatic Wing Information/News Departments2·1
Running costs of Aid Wing Information Department0·3
£ million
1987–881988–89
Cost of information staff at overseas posts17·618·3

£ million

1987–88

1988–89

Total39·940·6

Most of this expenditure is incurred in carrying out the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's responsibilities for the projection of Britain's image, and Her Majesty's Government's policies in overseas countries.