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Protective Tariffs

Volume 645: debated on Tuesday 25 July 1961

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer his estimate of the loss to the Revenue in this financial year of a 50 per cent. reduction, from 1st August, of all United Kingdom protective tariffs.

The estimated yield from the duties charged under the Import Duties Act, 1958, for the current financial year is £155 million of which £103 million is estimated to relate to the period from 1st August to the end of the financial year. The cost of halving all protective tariffs would depend on the extent to which imports increased as a result of such reductions.

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that if the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced such a cut this afternoon it might actually be worth the cheer which the right hon. and learned Gentleman was given earlier when he entered the Chamber?

Any questions on trade policy are, of course, for my right hon. Friend the President of the Board of Trade.