HC Deb 10 March 1981 vol 1000 cc773-4

First, the duties on alcoholic drinks and tobacco. From midnight tonight I propose to increase the duties on drinks by amounts which, incuding VAT, represent about 4p on the price of a typical pint of beer, 12p on a bottle of table wine, 25p on a bottle of sherry, and 60p on a bottle of spirits.

On tobacco, I propose from midnight on Friday to increase the duty by an amount which, including VAT, will represent 14p on a typical packet of 20 cigarettes.

There will be consequential increases for other alcoholic drinks and tobacco products but a little less for pipe tobacco, which is used particularly by pensioners. I estimate that the increase on alcoholic drinks will yield £500 million in 1981–82 and £515 million in a full year. The increases on tobacco will raise almost exactly the same.

The duties on matches and mechanical lighters, which have not been raised since 1949, will be increased substantially—to raise an extra £15 million a year.