HC Deb 10 April 1952 vol 498 cc2967-8
30. Mr. Thomas Reid

asked the President of the Board of Trade what are the export duties now levied on tea exported by India, Pakistan, Ceylon and Indonesia to this country; and if, in order to reduce the price of tea in Britain, he will make representations to these countries to reduce or abolish these duties.

Mr. P. Thorneycroft

The current export duties on tea are as follows:

  • India—4 annas per lb.
  • Pakistan—3 annas per lb.
  • Ceylon—35 cents per lb.
  • Indonesia—Nil.
I do not think that any useful purpose would be served by representations at the present time to secure the reduction or abolition of these duties. I should point out, however, that Pakistan and Ceylon have recently reduced them, and Indonesia suspended the duty of 8 per cent. as from 1st April, 1951.

Mr. Reid

Is it not a fact that sometimes these export duties mean that those countries are compelling the consumer of tea in Britain to contribute to their revenue?

Mr. Thorneycroft

Of course these export taxes are part of the fiscal policy of the countries concerned and, as such, are in the first instance primarily a matter for them.