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Revenue For 1954–55

Volume 526: debated on Tuesday 6 April 1954

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I estimate that revenue on the basis of existing taxation will amount to £4,537 million, an increase of £169 million over the out-turn in 1953–54. Inland Revenue duties in 1954–55 are expected to yield £2,385 million, an increase of £45 million compared with the out-turn for 1953–54. This increase is wholly attributable to Income Tax, from which I expect to collect £1,800 million, or £69 million more than last year. This is partly due to the recovery in profits during 1953 and partly to increases in wages and salaries. The increase is after allowing for the cost— about £50 million—of the restoration of initial allowances, which I announced at this time last year.

Profits Tax, on the other hand, is expected to yield only £172 million this year, a reduction of £16 million compared with 1953–54. This is because part of last year's collection consisted of arrears of tax at the higher gross rates applicable up to the end of 1951. I put the yield of Excess Profits Levy in 1954–55 at £60 million—a fall of £6 million on the previous year; and the yield of Surtax at £132 million, or approximately the same as the 1953–54 out-turn. Death Duties at £165 million, Stamp Duties at £55 million and Miscellaneous Inland Revenue duties at £1 million are also expected to bring in about the same amount as last year.

I put the revenue from Customs and Excise duties on the existing basis of taxation at £1,785 million in 1954–55, compared with £1,764 million last year. The principal items in this total are: tobacco, £633 million; beer and other alcoholic drinks, £381 million; oil, £300 million; Purchase Tax, £295 million; Import Duties, £56 million; entertainments, £44 million; and betting £30 million.

Allowing for a small increase of £4 million in the yield of motor duties, I estimate, therefore, that total tax revenue will amount to £4,247 million, an increase of £70 million over the corresponding yield last year. From non-tax revenue I also expect a considerable increase—£4 million more from broadcast licences, a result mainly of the higher charges which were announced a month ago; and £109 million more from Miscellaneous Revenue, which reflects, among other things, the proceeds of the expected liquidation of trading stocks by the Ministry of Food, and brings the total of Miscellaneous Revenue up to £245 million.