HC Deb 14 November 1939 vol 353 cc539-40
61. Mr. Pethick-Lawrence

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is now in a position to make a statement regarding a scheme announced in his Budget speech regarding the taxation of increases in wealth during the war?

Sir J. Simon

I am not at present in a position to add to the previous replies on this subject.

Mr. Pethick-Lawrence

In view of the fact that this proposal was put forward by the Prime Minister as a counterpart of conscription, and in view of the fact that the right hon. Gentleman himself made this an integral part of his Budget, are we really to infer that any steps towards implementing this scheme are to be left to a time after the war, when the continuance of this Government in office is problematical?

Sir J. Simon

The consideration of the matter is certainly not being postponed till after the war. The right hon. Gentleman, I think, will appreciate that while the importance of the subject is not overlooked, there are a great many matters of immediate urgency and importance to which we have to devote our attention.

Mr. Craven-Ellis

If such a proposal is to be considered, will my right hon. Friend consider a change in the value of money?

Sir J. Simon

All relevant facts will be borne in mind.

Mr. Mander

How is it possible to find out what the increase in wealth during the war has been unless a valuation of some kind is taken now?

Sir J. Simon

I think it is essentially a matter of comparison.