Skip to main content

Departmental Advertising (Expenditure)

Volume 412: debated on Friday 11 April 2003

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his Department's total spending was on advertising and promotional campaigns between April 2002 and March 2003; and what the cost of each campaign was, broken down by costs relating to (a) television, (b) radio and (c) print media. [106433]

Most expenditure by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on publicity materials is not allocated to specific promotional campaigns. Rather it is deployed in support of the FCO's efforts to promote greater understanding and awareness of the UK to overseas audiences, to project the UK's strengths and increase trade, inward investment, tourism, and the influence of UK foreign policy. An exception is the FCO's consular publicity campaigns, which are aimed at encouraging UK travellers to be better prepared before going overseas. These accounted for £908,294 in the period April 2002—March 2003, of which £32,459 was spent on advertising.Other separately identifiable expenditure on publicity materials and advertising between April 2002 and March 2003 totalled £8,670,615. Of this, £570,211 comprised advertising for recruitment purposes.There was additional expenditure in the UK and overseas that, under FCO accounting procedures, cannot be separately identified as advertising or promotional campaigns; to attempt to disaggregate this would incur disproportionate cost.

This expenditure is not compiled according to their relation to television, radio or print media. Moreover, it includes expenditure on events, research and production of promotional materials with no particular relation to any of these media. Therefore such a breakdown could not be compiled without incurring disproportionate cost.

All figures are subject to final auditing to take account of any end year adjustments. 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 compiled without incurring disproportionate 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.