The Scottish Government have confirmed in a written question that they are committed to opening a new Overseas Office in Warsaw before 2026.
This is despite John Swinney saying that "hard choices would need to be made" on spending, while announcing tens of millions of pounds worth of cuts to Education and Employment.
Previous questions have revealed that the total cost of the Scottish Government's overseas office network has reached £9 million, with individual offices costing between £567,000 and £2.2 million.
The cost of the Warsaw office is likely to reach above £500,000.
Stephen Kerr MSP said:
"The SNP tell us hard choices are to be made. Well they're clearly making them; cutting vital services like education, and the support for employment and getting people back into work. All the while putting money into this project, which seems to be a fairly transparent attempt at promoting Indyref2 abroad. We have seen no other genuine reason for these offices existing.
With Scottish taxes set to be the highest in the UK, Nicola Sturgeon has made her choice, and chooses to promote herself and Indyref2 instead of helping the Scottish people."
Stephen Kerr (Central Scotland) (Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party): To ask the Scottish Government what the projected cost is of the planned Scottish
Government office in Warsaw, when it anticipates that the office will open, and what the process will be for hiring staff for the office.
Angus Robertson: The new Scottish Government Office in Warsaw will be opened within the lifetime of this Parliament.
The office will be staffed by Civil Servants and Country Based Staff. Civil Servants are appointed to represent Scotland in our international offices by a recruitment panel that includes the posts’ line manager. Appointees can be recruited from existing roles within the Scottish Government or from wider UK Government departments. The Country Based Staff are recruited using the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office recruitment processes in each country.
Costs and staffing levels for the office will be finalised under future Scottish Government Budgets, in line with our priorities and within our budgetary limits.