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Co-Operative Societies (Taxation)

Volume 154: debated on Monday 22 May 1922

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what were the total profits made by the wholesale cooperative societies of this country during the past 10 financial years; and what additional revenue would have accrued to the State during that period had these corporations been subject to Income Tax and other taxation from which they are at present exempt?

Co-operative Societies are not exempt from Income Tax. As is evidenced by the Report of the Royal Commission on the Income Tax, the duty paid by them and by their members under the legal provisions which govern their case does not greatly differ from that which would be payable under general Income Tax law, unless I am to understand my hon. and gallant Friend as arguing that the general law should be amended so as to charge any surplus arising from mutual transactions I have no power to ascertain what profits would have been assessable upon these particular societies and what tax would have been paid in circumstances which are hypothetical.