§ 28. Mr. ANEURIN WILLIAMS
asked the Secretary to the Treasury whether the Inland Revenue authorities demand duty on all beverages containing over 2 per cent. of proof spirit; whether that is approximately equivalent to 1 per cent. of alcohol; whether any considerable quantity of beverages are in fact being sold as temperance drinks or without having paid duty; and whether, if that is so, he will take steps to see that the revenue is no longer defrauded?
§ The FINANCIAL SECRETARY to the TREASURY (Mr. Acland)
Two per cent. of proof spirit is approximately equivalent to 1 per cent. of alcohol, but the Customs and Excise authorities do not demand duty on all beverages containing more than 2 per cent. of proof spirit, as some of them are not taxable. If a drink sold as a temperance drink falls within the definition of beer it is liable to duty if it contains more than 2 per cent. of proof spirit; if it does not fall within that definition it is not liable to duty. I have no reason to think that any considerable quantity of drinks sold as temperance drinks which are liable to duty escape the charge to duty.