HC Deb 22 March 2001 vol 365 c345W
Mr. Baker

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what advice was given by NMEC to the Hinduja brothers in respect of matters relating to the applicability of VAT to their donation to the faith zone of the millennium dome. [153735]

Janet Anderson

[holding answer 14 March 2001]In seeking to recognise the charitable status of the Hinduja Foundation, the New Millennium Experience Company (NMEC) sought the advice of its tax consultants, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). NMEC passed on to Mr. S. P. Hinduja's office advice it received from PwC in December 1998 on the normal basis in such circumstances that neither NMEC nor PwC were liable or responsible for any reliance the Hindujas placed on that advice. In essence the advice indicated that if the terms of the Hinduja Foundation's contribution mirrored that of the sponsorship agreements drawn -up for commercial sponsors of the Dome then VAT would apply. In early February 1999 NMEC submitted to the Hinduja Foundation a donor agreement that mirrored agreements drawn-up for the other charitable trusts contributing to the faith zone. At that time the donation was not liable for VAT.