§ Mr. Peter Rees
No information is at present available on this, but the University of Bath, with financial support from the Social Services Research Council, and the active co-operation of Customs and Excise, has for some time been engaged in a research project into value added tax compliance costs. I gather that the exercise is nearing completition, and the results should be available towards the end of the year.
§ Mr. Speller
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer up to what age children are defined by Her Majesty's Customs and Excise as young for value added tax zero rating purposes; and what proportion of children below the age defined have feet larger than size 5½.
§ Mr Peter Rees
[pursuant to his reply, 20 March 1980, c. 322]: Eligibility for the relief from VAT depends mainly on the sizes of the clothing and footwear concerned. The maximum sizes relieved are based on the measurements of average-sized children, with the aim of providing relief up to their fourteenth birthday, which is the point at which the average measurements of children become indistinguishable from those of many adults. It is estimated that rather less than ten per cent. of children under the age of 14 take shoes larger than size 5½.