To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the further consultations he is to have with business concerning stamp duty on lease contracts, as referred to in paragraph 5.90 of the 2003 Budget (HC 500). 
The lease duty consultation after Budget 2002 was very helpful in informing the proposed new lease duty structure, which incorporates many consultees' views. The Chancellor announced in Budget 2003 that he is happy for further consultation to take place on the proposed new structure. In order to facilitate this, a time-limited regulatory power has been incorporated in Finance Bill 2003 to allow a suitable alternative proposal to be put in place for the implementation of Stamp Duty Land Tax in December 2003. However, any alternative will only replace the current proposals if it can be shown to be a better way of achieving the same objectives. The Inland Revenue will convene further discussions shortly with representative organisations and with businesses who have expressed a particular interest in the proposals.