HC Deb 14 June 1989 vol 154 c459W
Mr. Battle

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to his reply to the hon. Member for Argyll and Bute (Mrs. Michie) on 13 March,Official Report, column 61, if he is yet in a position to inform the House of the outcome of the discussions on European Community proposals for imposing value added tax on goods and clothing sold in charity shops; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Lilley

No. The Commission announced its revised thinking on indirect taxation in the single market on 17 May. It now accepts that some zero rates may be retained. This is clearly a step forward and in indication of our firm stance and we welcome it. However, the Commission's new proposals need much more clarification before we can take a view on them. Fortunately because changes to EC tax law require the unanimous agreement of the member states, there is no question of the Commission's proposals being forced upon us.

Dr. Marek

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what has been decided to date in the discussions in the Economic and Finance Committee on the approximation of value added tax rates and the harmonisation of customs and excise duties: and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Lilley

[holding answer 12 June 1989]: The Council of Economic and Finance Ministers have discussed these matters, which will be discussed again at a future ECOFIN Council. No decisions have been taken.

Back to