HC Deb 23 February 1866 vol 181 c963

asked Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer, Whether it is his intention to reduce the Duty on Coffee in the same proportion as the Duty on Tea has been reduced?


My hon. Friend is, no doubt, well aware, from his experience in Parliament, that the universal and inflexible rule of those who hold the office I do is to decline to answer any question in respect to the reduction of duties, except in those cases in which the Government itself has done some act which gives ground for the presumption that such reduction is intended. My opinion is that there is not any ground for reducing the duty on coffee with reference to the duty on tea, because I think they are things which ought to bear pretty nearly the same duty ad valorem. I believe the duty is about 6d. a pound on tea and 3d. a pound on coffee. There may be a difference of 2 or 3 per cent ad valorem; but I believe the relation is as fair as it is possible to make it.