HC Deb 18 April 1907 vol 172 cc1143-4
MR. DAVID MACIVER (Liverpool, Kirkdale)

I beg to ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer whether the duty payable on unmanufactured tobacco is considerably less than the duty charged on the product of the same quantity of raw material if imported in a manufactured state as cigarettes or cigars.


Yes, Sir. It has always been held that cigars cannot be manufactured in this country to compete with foreign cigars, and that the additional duty is, therefore, not a protective duty, but a luxury tax. The principle was extended to cigarettes by my immediate predecessor as Chancellor of the Exchequer, the right hon. Member for East Worcestershire, who, if I remember rightly, argued the case for the extension upon purely free trade grounds.


I beg to ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, as regards the kind of tobacco ordinarily consumed by working men, the amount claimed by the Exchequer in respect of Customs Duty largely exceeds the value of the article; and whether, in the case of a three penny packet of tobacco such as working men ordinarily smoke, the Customs Duty now collected amounts to about 2½d. the actual value of the tobacco being only about one halfpenny.


Yes, Sir.

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