HC Deb 30 September 1909 vol 11 cc1541-2

Drawback shall not be paid, except with the consent of the Commissioners of Customs and Excise, upon any tobacco stalks or shorts or other refuse of tobacco (including offal snuff) which is not the produce of the ordinary manufacturing operations of the licensed tobacco manufacturer exporting or depositing the stalks, shorts, or refuse.


Surely the right hon. Gentleman will not proceed with this Clause tonight. The Tobacco Duties under the Finance Bill have not been discussed, and this must be linked with the whole question of the Amendments which the Government may or may not accept in respect of the Tobacco Duties.


This Clause has nothing on earth to do with the Finance Bill. It was drawn and introduced before the Finance Bill was presented. By means of an ingenious arrangement it has become possible for one firm to deliberately do the Government in the matter of collecting refuse tobacco, mixing it up in the process of manufacture, and obtaining a drawback from the Customs. The firm, rather than come into court, submitted to the payment of a very heavy sum of money in consideration for the drawback they had obtained.


In view of the explanation of the right hon. Gentleman, which has been very illuminating to those hon. Members who do not know the circumstances, I shall not pursue my opposition.

Clause ordered to stand part of the Bill.