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Written Answers

Volume 375: debated on Monday 18 October 1976

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Written Answers

Income Tax: Reliefs And Allowances

Official Report:

  • (a) the revenue forgone in 1975–76 due to the following reliefs and allowances;
  • (b) the estimated saving in revenue if each of these was allowed only at the standard rate—
    • Single person;
    • Married person;
    • Wife's earned income;
    • Child allowance;
    • Dependent relative;
    • Additional personal child allowance;
    • Additional personal relief;
    • Housekeeper allowance;
    • Married age allowance;
    • Age allowance;
    • Mortgage Interest relief;
    • Life Assurance relief;
    • Bank Loan interest (for house purchase);
    • Superannuation;
    • Fees to professional bodies;
    • Work expenses.

    The estimates for 1975–76 are as follows:

    Allowance/reliefRevenue CostSaving if relief allowed only at basic rate of tax
    £ million£ million
    Single person2,18035
    Married person4,210155
    Wife's earned income1,08030
    Dependent relative351
    Additional persona allowance (1)30
    Age Allowance—
    Mortgage Interest relief86580
    Life Assurance relief215NIL
    Bank loan Interest (for house purchase)525
    (also included in Mortgage Interest Relief above)
    Superannuation (2)(2)(2)
    Fees to professional bodies (3)10525
    Work expenses (3)

  • (1) There is no additional personal child allowance. The additional personal allowance is available to those with single-handed responsibility for resident children for whom the child tax allowance can be claimed.
  • (2) The latest information on which to base estimates is the Government Actuary's Survey of Occupational Pension Schemes for 1971. The estimated relief for 1971–72 was £155 million on employees' contributions and £290 million on employers' contributions. It is not possible to estimate the saving if relief were allowed only at the basic rate.
  • (3) The available figures refer to the estimated cost for total expenses allowed as deductions under Schedule E.
  • Rhodesia

    asked Her Majesty's Government:What will be the main questions for discussion at the forthcoming conference on Rhodesia; what it is, hoped to achieve; which countries have accepted or are considering invitations to take part or send observers; by whom Rhodesian groups of opinions will be represented; and what assurances they hope to give regarding the prospects of ending economic sanctions and terrorist activities supported from outside Rhodesia.

    I would refer the noble Lord to my Statement on Rhodesia of 12th October. Her Majesty's Government have convened a conference in Geneva to assemble on 21st October, with a view to formal opening on 25th October, to discuss the formation of an interim Government in Rhodesia and other related matters. Invitations have been extended to Mr. Mugabe, to Bishop Muzorewa and to Mr. Nkomo. Mr. Smith has been invited to nominate representatives of the Rhodesian Front. No other countries have been invited.

    Her Majesty's Government are in no position to give categorical assurances either that sanctions will be lifted immediately or that there will be an immediate cessation of guerrilla activity . Mr. Smith recognised in his statement of 24th September that all this would take time. But we have made it clear that, once the interim Government is in place, we will recommend the lifting of sanctions; and we shall certainly do everything we can at the same time to end the fighting.

    Temporary Employment Subsidy

    asked Her Majesty's Government:What was the cost in July, August and September of the temporary employment subsidy; in respect of how many individuals this has been paid in each month, and what is their estimate of the annual cost.

    The Government regrets that it is not possible to give precise information in the form requested, but available information is set out below:

    MonthApproximate cumulative total of maintained jobs (workers) at the end of the monthActual amount paid in subsidy during the month
    September111,500Not yet available.
    The total annual cost is estimated at £101 million.

    Cyprus "Buffer Zone"

    asked Her Majesty's Government:What steps they are taking, through the United Nations and other channels open to them, to uphold the rights of farmers and others to cultivate or graze their land, where it lies within the" Buffer Zone" separating Northern from Southern Cyprus.

    The United Nations Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), which has the responsibility among other things of supervising the area between the two front lines, carries out a difficult task with admirable efficiency and complete impartiality. Her Majesty's Government give considerable support to this force, and view with concern any action which tends to undermine its authority.

    National Health Service Charges

    asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether the introduction of charges for National Health Service patients could be achieved under existing legislation, or whether new legislation would be required.

    Legislation already exists to enable charges to be made to some NHS patients for certain services. An extension of the ability to charge for other services would require new legislation.House adjourned at four minutes before eight o'clock.