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Publication - FOI/EIR release

Deputy First Minister visit to India 2017: FOI release

Published: 3 May 2018

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Published:
3 May 2018
Deputy First Minister visit to India 2017: FOI release

FOI reference: FOI/18/00605
Date received: 20 February 2018
Date responded: 20 March 2018

Information requested

Can you please tell me how many people took part in the trip below from the Scottish Government, who they were, what their job title was, where they stayed (names of hotels), and what was the overall cost? What was the cost of air travel and any other transport costs? Please break down the costs (ie accommodation/ transport).

What were the costs for the delegation of 21 higher education leaders and who paid for them? Where did they stay and what were their hotel and accommodation costs? Also please name them.

Response

There were 5 representatives from the Scottish Government present on the trip: the Deputy First Minister; Private Secretary to the Deputy First Minister; Deputy Director, International Division; International Relations Policy Officer; and Visits and Events Manager.

The party stayed at the Taj Mahal Palace and Tower in Mumbai and the Taj Mahal Hotel in New Delhi. With regard to accommodation costs, the cost of hotels was INR 12,000 per night in both Mumbai (3 nights) and Delhi (2 nights) on a bed and breakfast basis. In total, for the whole visit, the cost per person was INR 36,000 in Mumbai and INR 24,000 in Delhi.

The flight costs were as follows:

Deputy First Minister:

  • Edinburgh to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Mumbai, Delhi to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Edinburgh - £1,725.94 in total

  • Mumbai to Delhi - £189.20

Private Secretary to Deputy First Minister:

  • Edinburgh to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Mumbai, Delhi to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Edinburgh - £1,725.94 in total

  • Mumbai to Delhi - £189.20

Deputy Director, International Divison:

  • Edinburgh to London Heathrow, London Heathrow to Mumbai, Delhi to London Heathrow - £984.13 in total

  • Mumbai to Delhi - £116.40

International Relations Policy Officer:

  • Edinburgh to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Mumbai, Delhi to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Edinburgh – £652.13 in total

  • Mumbai to Delhi - £59.20

Visits and Events Officer:

  • Edinburgh to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Mumbai, Delhi to Amsterdam, Amsterdam to Edinburgh – £652.13 in total

  • Mumbai to Delhi - £59.20

In total, flights costs were £6353.47 for the five members of the party.

The delegation of higher education representatives were responsible for their own expenses. However, many of them took advantage of the preferential rate of INR 12,000 per night for each of the hotels that was negotiated for the visit. Additionally, some of the staff were based in India.

The academics in the party had a full programme whilst in India, largely independent of the Deputy First Minister's programme. The aim of the academic programme was to engage with Indian university leaders as well as business, industry, alumni and other partners in order to engage on topics relevant to global challenges across the themes of energy, the security of water and food, future cities, big data and health. The two programmes came together at key points to demonstrate the support of the Scottish Government for the Higher Education sector in Scotland.

Further details of the programme are outlined by Universities Scotland in the press release at: https://www.universities-scotland.ac.uk/scotlands-universities-welcome-india/

The names of the academics involved in the programme are listed in the attached table.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses

Contact

Please quote the FOI reference

Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG