§ Mr. Kenneth Clarke
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the cost of printing and distributing VAT news to all registered traders, and whether he will restrict its circulation in future to those who write to request it.
§ Dr. Gilbert
The cost of the two issues so far published was roughly £100,000 per issue, or about 8p per registered trader, including postage.
It is necessary to keep all taxable persons fully informed about their statutory obligations under VAT. If VAT news were sent, as the hon. Member suggests, only to those who wrote to Customs and and Excise to request it, Customs would be obliged to make other arrangements to ensure that all traders received necessary information; this would considerably reduce any saving that might result 170W from restricting the circulation of VAT news.
§ Miss Quennell
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer when the hon. Member for Petersfield may expect a reply from him, following her representations to him on behalf of branches of the Hampshire Federation of Women's Institutes on the impact of value added tax on their subscriptions; and what that reply will contain.
§ Dr. Gilbert
I replied on 18th June in a letter explaining that these subscriptions are subject to value added tax under the relevant provisions of the Finance Act 1972 and that I am satisfied that it would not be right to amend the law.