HC Deb 06 March 1978 vol 945 c951
5. Mr. Carmichael

asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection if he is now ready to make an order on value added tax inclusive pricing.

The Minister of State, Department of Prices and Consumer Protection (Mr. John Fraser)

As I told my hon. Friend the Member for Southampton, Test (Mr. Gould) on 30th January, I hope to make an order as soon as I have resolved the problems arising from the report by the Consumer Protection Advisory Committee.

Mr. Carmichael

Is my hon. Friend in a position to give the House any idea how long this process will take? Is he aware that the customer rightly feels cheated when, after having decided to buy something, VAT is added to the price? It is disconcerting. Will he speed up the process?

Mr. Fraser

I agree that there should be universal VAT inclusive pricing. There are some problems, in particular on builders' estimates. I cannot give the exact date, but I hope to make a firm announcement shortly.

Mr. Marten

Will the Minister explain why, when a person buys a motor car, apart from paying the vehicle licence tax, which is a car tax, he should pay VAT on the car tax? Why is such a person doubly taxed or taxed on taxation?

Mr. Fraser

Because it is the judgment of the Chancellor of the Echequer that that is the right way to do it.