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Purchase Tax

Volume 464: debated on Tuesday 3 May 1949

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what reductions have so far been made in Purchase Tax upon general household goods and commodities; and what is the gross value of those reductions and the individual amounts in each classified group.

I regret that information in this form is not available. I will, however, circulate in the OFFICIAL REPORT a list of the principal reductions made in the Finance Act, 1948, and subsequently by Treasury Order, at an estimated cost of about £60 million a year, additional to the reliefs accruing from extensions of the Utility Schemes.

Could my hon. Friend say whether these reductions have, in the main, been passed on to the consumer?

So far as we know they have in the great majority of cases. The revenue has certainly been conceded by the Treasury.

Is the Minister aware that there is a very strong feeling that Purchase Tax should be removed from all household goods and necessities and will he draw the attention of his right hon. and learned Friend to that before the Finance Bill comes in so that the Purchase Tax may be removed as the people desire?

Purchase Tax has already been removed from the great majority of real necessities.

Following is the list:

Brief DescriptionRate at 1st April 1948Current Rate
Per cent.Per cent.
Groups 1, 2, 3—
Silk garments5033⅓
Sheepskin garments, head gear and gloves for in dustrial use5033⅓
Non-Utility fur garments, headgear and gloves125100
Hand-knitted and hand embroidered garments33⅓Exempt
Hand-knitted and hand embroidered headgear and gloves50Exempt
Headgear, other non-Utility5033⅓
Gloves, other non-Utility5033⅓
Haberdashery of fur125100
Haberdashery, hand-knitted50Exempt
Haberdashery, other non Utility5033⅓
Group 5—
Domestic textile articles (non-Utility) of pile or woven-figured fabrics12566⅔
Non-Utility pillows, bolsters and mattresses5033⅓
Group 6—
Ribbons, etc., not more than 3 inches wide5033⅓
Pile and woven-figured fabrics (non-Utility)12566⅔
Group 8—
Fur skin, dressed125100
Group 9—
Certain tiles and strips for floor covering50Exempt
Fur rugs125100
Other floor coverings, except linoleum5033⅓
Group 10—
Paper towels and hand kerchiefs50Exempt
Group 11—
Glassware of cut glass125100
Galvanized baths not less than 42 inches long33⅓Exempt
Hardware, tableware, etc., except vessels for food and drink5033⅓
Furniture, non-Utility5033⅓
Group 12—
Vacuum cleaners, and other gas and electric appliances (except heaters)5033⅓
Gas space and water heating appliances7566⅔

Brief DescriptionRate at 1st April,1948Current Rate
Per cent.Per cent.
Group 13—
Group 14—
Lighting fittings5033–
Incandescent mantles5033⅓
Electric filament lamps5033⅓
Oil burning lamps50Exempt
Group 15—
Hand lamps and hand torches5033⅓
Group 16—
Electric lawn mowers7533⅓
Garden ornaments125100
Garden furniture5033⅓
Group 17—
Clocks and watches (not of gold or silver)5033⅓
Clocks and watches of gold and silver125100
Group 18—
Wireless and television sets and valves5033⅓
Group 19—
Pipe organs, etc50Exempt
Gramophone records not produced for general sale50Exempt
Group 20—
Toys and some sports goods5033⅓
Group 21—
Wooden walking sticks5033⅓
Group 23—
Trunks, bags, etc., of leather125100
Plain baskets5033⅓
Group 25—
Pictures, vases, etc.125100
Groups 26, 27, 28—
Jewellery, gold and silver ware, etc.125100
Group 29—
Most fancy goods125100
Group 30—
Hair-waving and hair-drying machines5033⅓
Group 31—
Electric dry shavers12533⅓
Brushes, combs, scissors, razors, toilet paper, etc.5033⅓
Other toilet requisites125100
Group 32—
Perfumery and cosmetics125100
Toilet soap, toothpaste and other toilet preparations5033⅓
Group 33—
A range of non-proprietary medicines; and certain other medicines used in dispensing33⅓Exempt
Group 34—
Stationery and office requisites5033⅓