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157. Mr. Madden : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate how much the top 1 per cent. of tax units paid in tax in 1988-89, and how much would this group have paid had the 1987-88 tax levels remained unchanged except for indexing.
Mr. Michael J. Martin : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate how much the top 1 per cent. of tax units paid in tax in 1988 -89 and how much would this group have paid had the 1987-88 tax levels remained unchanged except for indexing.
Mr. Norman Lamont : In 1988-89 the income tax liability of the top 1 per cent. of tax units liable to tax is estimated to be £6 billion. If the 1988 Budget had merely indexed tax thresholds and allowances and assuming the same levels of income as above, their liability would have been £8.1 billion.
These estimates are based on a projection of the 1986-87 survey of personal incomes and are provisional.
50. Mr. Michael : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the cost to the Exchequer of tax relief in relation to (a) enterprise zones, (b) business expansion schemes and (c) personal equity plans.
74. Dr. Moonie : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the cost to the Exchequer of tax relief in relation to (a) enterprise zones, (b) business expansion schemes and (c) personal equity plans.
144. Mr. Martlew : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will estimate the cost to the Exchequer of tax relief in relation to (a) enterprise zones, (b) business expansion schemes and (c) personal equity plans.
Mr. Norman Lamont : It is not possible to make a direct comparison because of the variety of mortgages, some of which involve payments of interest and endowment premiums and others include repayments of capital as well as interest. But the additional interest payable on the average sized mortgage of £22,000 is about £50 per month. The increase is less in those cases where the repayment period has been extended or part of the interest has been deferred.
Mr. Lilley : The Treasury has received a number of representations welcoming the improvement in public sector finances, which is expected to result in 1988-89 in the largest budget surplus since figures has been kept on a comparable basis.
Column 257gains tax liability in respect of land made available at below market prices for the purpose of enabling the provision of low-cost housing.
Mr. Norman Lamont : I refer my hon. Friends to the reply given by my hon. Friend the Economic Secretary on 16 March to my hon. Friend the Member for Beaconsfield (Mr. Smith), Official Report, columns 300-1, which included a number of changes introduced by the Government to encourage charitable giving.
Some measure of the success of these changes is shown in the increases in gifts to charity. For covenanted giving, the estimated growth in real terms between 1978-79 and 1987-88 is 140 per cent. The real increase in bequests to charities over the same period is 150 per cent.
Mr. Lilley : The electricity board and the water authorities have already announced price increases to take effect this month. It is estimated that these changes, once they have fully worked through to consumers' bills, will raise the RPI by less than per cent.
79. Mr. French : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will give the average annual increase in the retail prices index for the period 1974 to 1979 and for the most recent five-year period for which figures are available.
Mr. Lilley : The retail price index rose on average 15.5 per cent. a year in the five years to 1979, over three times higher than its average annual growth of 5.1 per cent. over the five years to February 1989.
70. Mr. Holt : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what estimate he has of the number of amateur sports clubs which pay value added tax on collections to provide refreshments ; whether he has any proposals to abolish this requirement ; and what information he has as to whether this requirement obtains in other EEC countries.
Mr. Lilley : The VAT treatment of sports clubs' collections is determined by European Community VAT law, which defines what constitutes a taxable supply. If no conditions are attached to the collections, they are outside the scope of VAT. However, where they amount to a general charge for facilities, such as the provision of refreshments, VAT does apply. Whether or not these provisions are likely to change depends on developments in the Council, which is considering possible amendments to the law in this area. I regret that detailed information about the treatment of sports clubs' collections in other member states is not available.
151. Ms. Ruddock : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was his original forecast for the take-up of personal equity plan schemes ; and what is his latest estimate of the number of existing schemes.
Mr. Norman Lamont : When personal equity plans were announced in the 1986 Budget it was recognised that take-up would be heavily influenced by external factors. The estimated cost of the scheme assumed that take-up could reach 500,000 in the first year. Latest information suggests that more than 400,000 plans have been taken out to date.
Mr. Lilley : My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer met his counterparts on 2 April at the meeting of the Group of Seven Finance Ministers in Washington. A statement was released. A wide range of topics were discussed, including progress and prospects for the world economy. Finance Ministers' commitment to close co-operation on exchange markets was reiterated. They committed themselves to resisting protectionist pressures wherever they arise. The recent proposals by several countries for further development of the debt strategy were also discussed, including ways by which the strategy could be strengthened by placing greater emphasis on voluntary debt and debt service reduction in agreement with commercial banks as a complement to new lending.
British Aerospace (1981 and 1985)
Cable and Wireless (1981, 1983 and 1985)
National Freight Consortium (1982)
Britoil (1982 and 1985)
Amersham International (1982)
Associated British Ports (1983 and 1984)
Enterprise Oil (1984)
British Telecom (1984)
British Shipbuilders warship yards (1984-85)
British Gas (1986)
National Bus Company (1986-88)
British Airways (1987)
Royal Ordnance (1987)
Rover Group (1988)
British Steel (1988)
110. Mr. Patnick : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he expects the review into the viability of relocating Inland Revenue staff out of London to be completed ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Norman Lamont : My right hon. Friend the Paymaster General announced on 9 February that most large Departments had reviews of location in hand. The Inland Revenue's review is well advanced, but its report has not yet been published, nor will decisions be taken on its recommendations, until full consultations have taken place with the staff and the departmental trade union side. As yet, no timetable has been set for such consultation, so I cannot tell my hon. Friend when an announcement will be made.
121. Mr. Corbyn : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what action he is taking to prevent the International Monetary Fund imposing conditions on loans to indebted countries which may harm the poorest people in those countries.
Mr. Lilley : The purpose of programmes supported by the International Monetary Fund is to help stabilise economies and so create the right environment for sustained growth, thus reducing poverty. Some of the poorest groups may benefit immediately--for instance farmers, through the introduction of agricultural reforms giving them better prices for their crops. The fund is aware that there may be short-run adverse effects on other poor groups, and is ready to help design programmes in a way which minimises these, with help from the World Bank. But it cannot impose any given income distribution--this has to be for the countries concerned to decide.
Mr. Lilley : My right hon. Friend has not met representatives of GAMTA. However, I met a deputation led by my hon. Friend which included representatives of GAMTA on 20 December 1988 when the duty charge on aviation gasoline (AVGAS) was discussed.
Mr. Major : Total business investment in 1988 was £49.8 billion at 1985 prices, its highest level ever, as a percentage of GDP. It was forecast in the Financial Statement and Budget Report to increase yet further, by 8 per cent. in 1989.
143. Mr. Teddy Taylor : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will raise at the next meeting of the Council of Finance Ministers the issues set out in the Court of Auditors report ; and if he will make a statement.
147. Mr. Tredinnick To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the growth of real personal disposable income between the third quarter of 1987 and the third quarter of 1988.
156. Mr. Patrick McNair-Wilson : To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the growth of real personal disposable income between the third quarter of 1987 and the third quarter of 1988. 161. Mr. Neil Hamilton To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the growth of real personal disposable income between the third quarter of 1987 and the third quarter of 1988.