asked the President of the Board of Trade if he can explain why toys, such as magic lanterns and viewscopes, are classified as scientific instruments by his Department for the purpose of duty under the Safeguarding of Industries Act, while vacuum flasks and similar articles are not; whether he can explain why some glass hand-mirrors are held to be exempt from duty as optical glass, whereas those used for shaving purposes are held to be dutiable; and whether he will issue a list stating what glass articles are dutiable and thus save the present confusion, expense, and delay?
As regards magic lanterns and viewscopes, I would refer my hon. Friend to the answers which I gave to the hon. Member for the Western Isles on the 24th October last and the 8th May respectively. Laboratory vacuum flasks are included in the list of articles dutiable under the heading of scientific glassware. As regards mirrors, a small number have been held to be dutiable as having worked surfaces and, consequently, falling under the heading of optical elements. In reply to the last part of the question, I would refer to the lists already issued under Section 1 (5) of the Safeguarding of Industries Act.