HC Deb 11 March 1959 vol 601 cc120-2W
92. Mr. Nabarro

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in the interests of hygiene, fuel efficiency, and the productivity of the manufacturing industry concerned, he will, before his next Budget, review the present position as regards the levying of Purchase Tax on water filters and softeners with a view to extending to all types of water filters and water softeners, whether designed for domestic or commercial use, the present exemption given to purely mechanical filters, mechanical filters employing chemical reaction for coagulation purposes, and water softeners for catering establishments.

Mr. Erroll

My right hon. Friend will have the whole field of taxation under review before the Budget.

93. Mr. Nabarro

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer why bird cages and bird cage fittings are chargeable to Purchase Tax at 15 per cent. whereas bird cage novelties are chargeable at 30 per cent.; how many years must elapse before bird cage novelties are regarded by the Customs and Excise authorities as normal fittings of a bird cage; and whether he will provide a list of bird cage fittings and novelties, respectively, which are now chargeable to the differential rates of 15 per cent. and 30 per cent., respectively.

Mr. Erroll

Bird cages and bird cage fittings are domestic hardware; bird cage novelties are toys. Any catalogue of novelties which I might provide would quickly be outdated; but time does not alter the distinction itself.

94. Mr. Nabarro

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many deputations have been received from trade bodies and others in connection with Purchase Tax since the Finance Act, 1958; how many such bodies have submitted representations about Purchase Tax and have either not requested or been permitted to send deputations to supplement their written representations; and whether he will publish the names of all such bodies in the Official Parliamentary Report.

Mr. Erroll

My Treasury colleagues and I, and the Customs and Excise Department, have received many representations about various aspects of the Purchase Tax since the passing of the last Finance Act. For obvious reasons most of those concerned have not desired publicity, and I shall respect their wishes.

Mr. Currie

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer why the wholesale value of goods for the purpose of charging Purchase Tax includes the cost of delivery of the goods to the buyers' premises; whether he is aware that this practice bears hardly on the industries of Northern Ireland; and if he will take this factor into account when considering changes in Purchase Tax.

Mr. Erroll

This is a statutory requirement and the consensus of trade opinion favoured this arrangement when Purchase Tax was introduced in 1940. My right hon. Friend sees no sufficient reason for dissenting from the view contained in paragraph 142 of the report of the Purchase Tax (Valuation) Committee (Cmd. 8830), published in May, 1953, that the value for tax should continue to be that of the goods delivered at the buyer's place of busineses.

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