§ Mr. Bruce-Gardyne
My right hon. and learned Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer proposes to include in the Finance Bill 1983 provision for deferment of the payment of the excise duties on wines and spirits. Deferment will be allowed for an average period of four weeks, thus making the duty payment provisions for wines and spirits comparable with those already in force for beer, cider, made-wine cigarettes and matches.
Duty deferment under the Finance Bill legislation will not become operative until after Royal Assent. However, the Scotch whisky industry in particular has for a long time sought to be allowed duty deferment for its sales to the domestic market; and in order to give relief at the earliest practicable date to this industry with its outstanding export record, I am authorising Customs and Excise to introduce duty deferment arrangements for wines and spirits from 15 February 1983 on an extra-statutory basis.
To assist the smooth transition to these new duty deferment arrangements, I am also authorising Customs and Excise exceptionally to extend the average period of deferment to five weeks for wines and spirits cleared between 15 February and 14 May 1983.