§ Sir Peter Emery
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what(a) representations he has received and 614W (b) consideration he has given to a reduction in the VAT rate for the tourism industry to a level comparable with that in the Irish Republic. 
§ Dawn Primarolo
I have received a number of representations in favour of a reduced rate of VAT for tourist accommodation, and have seen a recent report on the subject prepared for the British Tourist Authority. The United Kingdom has a strong and well established tourism industry, attracting record numbers of overseas visitors and high visitor spending. Our position is not comparable with the circumstances of Ireland's package of measures to boost tourism, which included a reduced VAT rate for tourist accommodation.