§ Ms. Walley
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, in the light of recent announcements about the dangers of foam in domestic furniture, he will consider zero-rating smoke detectors for value added tax purposes.
§ Mr. Lilley
No. The case for zero-rating smoke detectors cannot be considered in isolation from many other equally deserving candidates for special treatment. To grant relief from VAT in all these cases would be unacceptably expensive in revenue terms and would in the long run undermine the broad-based nature of the tax.