asked the Secretary of State for Energy if he is satisfied with the contribution double glazing presently makes towards savings in energy resources.
The Minister will be aware of the representations made by the Glass and Glazing Federation. Is he aware that since the imposition of value added tax on double glazing hundreds of small companies have gone bankrupt and nearly a thousand jobs have disappeared in the north-west? Does the Minister not agree that VAT is unnecessary in this important sector of industry?
The imposition of VAT is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer. However, the installation of double glazing has many advantages. One of the major objectives of the Glass and Glazing Federation is that householders should use energy more efficiently. That objective has the full co-operation of the Energy Efficiency Office and of my Department.
Could my hon. Friend make any reassuring noises about the future of the home energy audit scheme?
I very much support the concept of energy labelling, and look forward to further progress towards that end.