asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he is aware that great dissatisfaction prevails against the exemption from payment of Income Tax on the part of co-operative societies and will he see that in the forthcoming Budget such societies are allowed no preferential treatment, but shall be placed on exactly the same footing as other trading concerns?
The hon. Member is under a misapprehension in thinking that co-operative societies are exempt from Income Tax. As is evidenced by the Report of the Royal Commission on the Income Tax (Cmd. 615), the tax paid by them and 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. As regards the second part of the question the hon. Member will not expect me in a matter of this kind to anticipate my Budget statement.