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Volume 175: debated on Thursday 5 July 1990

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To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what consultations he undertakes with local government representatives when considering changes in the coinage; what estimate he has made of the consequential cost of converting coin-operated machines when the 5p coin is replaced; and if he will make a statement.

The decision to introduce the new 5p coin was taken after extensive research and consultation on Britain's coinage.In July 1987 a consultative pamphlet inviting comments on options for changes to the coinage, was issued to a wide range of organisations including local authorities. Sample coins have been made available to a large number of vending interests and local authorities in order to assist in the adjustment to the new coin.While there will undoubtedly be some transitional costs for owners of coin operated machines, they will benefit from the lower cost of handling lighter coins.