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Parliamentary debates and questions

S5W-12628: Neil Findlay (Lothian)

Scottish Labour

Date lodged: 10 November 2017

To ask the Scottish Government what guidance ministers work to regarding how ministerial meetings are (a) conducted and (b) recorded.

Answered by: Joe FitzPatrick 24 November 2017

Scottish Government Ministers adhere to the Scottish Ministerial Code which includes a section on Ministerial Conduct (section 1.2):

https://beta.gov.scot/publications/scottish-ministerial-code-2016-edition/pages/2/

Scottish Government guidance requires that formal minutes are taken where there are discussions of substantive government business, where policy areas arise or where there are significant action points.

We would not generally take minutes of goodwill visits, hospitality events, catch ups or courtesy conversations where no policy decisions arise and where it may be sufficient to record within the official diary that the meeting has taken place.

Where a Minister is involved in a meeting, conversation or exchange with external organisations which raises substantive issues relating to Government decisions or contracts, and where no Private Secretary, adviser or official is present, they should inform their Private Office, who will arrange for the basic facts to be recorded (see Ministerial Code paragraph 4.23).