§ Mr. JOYNSON-HICKSasked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether the spirits paying duty and retained for Home consumption for the year 1908–9, including all forestalling clearances, amounted to 38,626,000 gallons; whether the estimated amount for 1909–10 of 29,700,000 gallons will therefore pay the new duty of 3s. 9d.; and, if so, what will be the total of such new duty?

§ Mr. HOBHOUSEAs I informed the hon. Member on the 19th inst., 38,626,000 gallons of spirits were duty paid and retained for Home consumption in 1908–9. It is estimated that 29,700,000 gallons will pay duty in 1909–10, but duty will not be paid on all this quantity at the increased rate, which only took effect on 30th April.

§ Mr. JOYNSON-HICKSWill the right hon. Gentleman tell me what proportion will be paid?

§ Mr. HOBHOUSENo, I cannot say accurately.

§ Mr. JOYNSON-HICKSCan the right hon. Gentleman say how much prior to the 30th April?

§ Mr. HOBHOUSEI do not have it here, but I would be very glad to get the information.

§ Mr. JOYNSON-HICKSI asked the right hon. Gentleman whether the estimated amount of 29,700,000 gallons would pay the new duty?

§ Mr. HOBHOUSEI have answered that question.

§ Mr. JOYNSON-HICKSasked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the amount of spirits which, during the months of May and June, paid duty at the increased rate; and what was the total amount of such increased duty so paid?

§ Mr. HOBHOUSEThe approximate quantity of spirits upon which duty was paid at the increased rates during May and June was 1,638,000 gallons, and the total amount of such increased duty so paid was £1,207,000.

§ Mr. JOYNSON-HICKSIs that the amount of the duty for two months? The Chancellor of the Exchequer's estimate is £1,600,000 for 12 months.

§ Mr. HOBHOUSEThis is an answer to the question as to what is the total amount of the increased duty so paid. What I have stated is the total amount of the duty.

Mr. PIKE PEASEIn view of the certainty that the amount of the money derived from this tax will be at least twice, three or five times bigger than the Chancellor estimated in his Budget speech, will not the right hon. Gentleman make a new estimate before we come to the part of the Finance Bill dealing with that tax?

§ Mr. HOBHOUSEI cannot admit any such assumption as the right hon. Gentleman has made.