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Tax Forms (Welsh Language)

Volume 467: debated on Tuesday 12 July 1949

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52.

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will arrange for letters or notes of guidance as to Income Tax papers to be written in the Welsh language in Welsh-speaking areas.

I am advised that the use of English in Income Tax forms, notes for guidance, and correspondence does not give rise to special difficulties in Wales. Accordingly, I do not consider that the additional expenditure which would be involved would be justifiable. As my hon. Friend will be aware, the staff in appropriate tax offices in Wales includes Welsh-speaking officials and, if need be, correspondence can be conducted in Welsh.

Does not the Chancellor appreciate that it is very difficult for persons who primarily speak and write Welsh to follow these difficult matters? Could he give some estimate of the cost involved in sending out Welsh circulars in the Welsh-speaking areas?

No, Sir; I have not an accurate estimate. I am quite sure, however, that by having Welsh-speaking officers any difficulties can be overcome far better than by having Welsh documents.