§ Mr. Anthony Coombs
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what consideration he is giving to the provision of further guidance by the Inland Revenue as to the meaning and scope of scientific research as outlined in section 139 of the Capital Allowances Act 1990.
§ Mr. Dorrell
Scientific research is defined in the Capital Allowances Act as coveringany activities in the fields of natural or applied science for the extension of knowledge".
Whether any particular activities fall within this definition will depend on the facts of the case. However, in general terms, activities are scientific research if they involve the application of new scientific principles in an existing area of research or the application of existing principles in a new area of research. The essential test is innovation.