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Magic Lanterns And Cinematographs

Volume 148: debated on Wednesday 9 November 1921

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ask the Financial Secretary to the Treasury what instructions have been issued by His Majesty's Board of Customs with regard to the duty on magis lanterns and cinematographs made by toy makers and sold in toy shops; and why in some ports the officers insist that duty shall be payable on the thick glass lenses, which are neither optical nor scientific, whilst in other ports the Customs officials insist that not alone shall duty be levied on the glass lenses, but on all parts of the lanterns, including the lamp and the chimney glass, as well as on the box which contains it and the extra slides which accompany the lantern, also on the amount paid in freight, and if the goods have been insured against breakage and theft, duty is also levied on the amount paid to the insurance company?

I would refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the President of the Board of Trade to a question on the same subject asked by the hon. Member for the Western Isle Division (Dr. Murray) on the 24th ultimo. The lanterns and cinematographs are chargeable as a whole, but the slides are not dutiable. I am not aware that there is any divergence of practice on the part of Customs officials at various ports, but if the hon. Member will give me particulars of any such divergence I will cause inquiry to be made. As regards the last part of the question, if the hon. Member will refer to the definition of value in Section IV (1) of the Act, he will see that duty is expressly chargeable on the cost of freight and insurance to the port of importation.