HC Deb 22 November 1916 vol 87 cc1510-1

(1) The Board of Trade may make rules (but as to fees with the concurrence of the Treasury) concerning any of the following matters:

  1. (a) The fees to be paid to the registrar under this Act, so that they do not exceed the sum of five shillings for the registration of any one statement;
  2. (b) The forms to be used under this Act;
  3. (c) The duties to be performed by any registrar under this Act;
  4. (d) The performance by assistant registrars and other officers of acts by this Act required to be done by the registrar;
  5. (e) Generally the conduct and regulation of registration under this Act, and any matters incidental thereto.

(2) All fees payable in pursuance of any such rules shall be applied as the Treasury may direct.


I beg to move, in Sub-section (1), at the end of paragraph (b), to insert the words "which shall not extend the particulars required under Section 3."

The object of my Amendment is to get a Board of Trade assurance that no authority shall be given to the Board of Trade to make rules to get other information than what is laid down in Clause 3. If this House gives the Board of Trade unlimited power to make rules I suppose it will be possible to ask questions as to the capital of firms, their bankers, and a great many other things which would be very much resented. Such information, of course, might be very useful to the Income Tax people who would be able to get the Board of Trade to put out questions, but that course, I think, will be unfair and unreasonable.


I do not think it is likely that the Board of Trade will put into operation a proceeding such as that described by the hon. Gentleman, particularly in view of the experience in relation to Form IV., which raised this very point. There would be no right to demand particulars, as in the other Act, except those actually in the Act. That, I think, has been so thoroughly established that these words are unnecessary. We should never attempt—if we did, obviously it would not be right under the law—to adopt the course suggested by my hon. Friend. All that will be asked for are the particulars included in the Act. My hon. Friend is perfectly justified in raising the question, but his Amendment is unnecessary.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Question, "That the Clause stand part of the Bill," put, and agreed to.