§ Considered in Committee.
§ [Sir WILLIAM ANSTRUTHER-GRAY in the Chair]
§ 4.33 p.m.
§ The Chancellor of the Exchequer (Mr. Reginald Maudling)
I beg to move,That the Bill be considered in the following order: Clause 1, Schedule 1, Clause 2, Schedule 2, Clause 3, Schedules 3 and 4, Clause 4, Schedule 5, Clauses 5 and 6, Schedule 6, Clauses 7 to 18, Schedule 7, Clauses 19 to 22, Schedule 8, Clauses 23 and 24, new Clauses, Schedule 9, new Schedules.This Motion has been the normal procedure now for several years. It enables us to take the relevant Schedules along with the Clauses to which they refer.
§ Mr. James Callaghan (Cardiff, South-East)
It is, of course, a convenience to attach to the Clauses the Schedules which apply to them. I remember the days, some years ago, when we used to return to the Schedules after we had discussed the Clauses, and one of the reasons for departing from that old practice was not only that the new course gave rise to a more coherent discussion, but also that there was a tendency, on reaching the Schedules, to forget what 944 we had talked about on the Clauses, and to start all over again.
That excuse is less necessary this year than it has been before. We have on this occasion a highly truncated Finance Bill. There are only 24 Clauses. Some of them will not tax our memories to any great extent, and some of them will be disposed of very quickly. I cannot imagine any undue excitement over the Government's stock entered in the Dublin register or much cheering or booing over the exemption of service contracts for Stamp Duty, and I do not suppose that the Amendments to the Sugar Act will cause much excitement, either.
Altogether, I think that there is less reason for this Motion on this occasion, for we have this time a Finance Bill which is less than half the normal length. Obviously, from its length, it was designed for a June election, which did not come about. I have no doubt that the Chancellor wishes that it had. This is a dull Bill; it is a tedious Bill; it is unenterprising; it is unimaginative, and it is unexciting. I doubt whether it will detain the Committee overlong. I think that what the Chancellor has proposed may shorten even further the length of our discussion and, considering that the Bill is nasty, brutish, and short, we shall not oppose the Motion.
§ Question put and agreed to