HC Deb 15 November 1979 vol 973 cc756-7W
Mr. Ralph Howell

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish figures comparing, in local currencies and in £ sterling equivalent (a) gross domestic product per person, (b) average income tax paid per person and (c) average value added tax paid per person, in each of the United Kingdom, Germany and France, during the latest year for which the figures are available.

Mr. Peter Rees

The information is given in the table below. Exchange rates do not provide a satisfactory basis for converting other national currencies to £ sterling in the context of gdp since they do not necessarily reflect the relative purchasing power of national currencies in term of goods and services available in the countries being compared. It is generally recognised that a more realistic assessment of relative levels of gdp in terms of their domestic purchasing power can be made through the use of purchasing power parities. Estimates on both bases are given in the table.

Kingdom as at 3 May by the Government and the annual total interest payable on them.

Mr. Biffen

The national debt excluding that payable directly overseas at 31 March 1979, the latest available date for which figures are available, amounted to £79,419,475,613. The interest paid on that debt in the year ended 31 March 1979 amounted to £6,109,564,552.