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Petrol Prices

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list the average figures for European unleaded petrol prices for each country of the European Union in pence per litre, with the amount of tax paid and the percentage of tax this represents. [129285]

Mrs. Liddell: The latest available information for premium unleaded petrol prices and taxes is for April 2000 and is as shown.

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European Unleaded Petrol Prices(1)
Prices as at mid April 2000

(Pence per litre(2)) (Percentage)
Pump PriceAmount of TaxTax Component
United Kingdom79.9660.7776.0

(1) Premium unleaded 95RON

(2) Prices converted to pounds sterling using mid April exchange rates.


European Commission Oil Bulletin

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what has been the change in petrol prices per litre, at an annual rate, in each month since March 2000. [129271]

Mrs. Liddell: The information requested is in the following table.

Pence per litrePence per litrePence per litrePercentage change
Premium unleaded petrol
4 star/lead replacement petrol(3)
Super unleaded petrol

(3) From October 1999 lead replacement petrol replaced four star


DTI Energy Trends


Pensioners' Incomes

Mr. Cohen: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what recent assessment his Department has made of levels of taxation on pensioners' income; and if he will make a statement. [127613]

Miss Melanie Johnson: Six out of 10 pensioners do not have any income tax to pay. In his 1999 Budget, the Chancellor increased the age-related personal allowances by an amount well above inflation, and in his latest

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Budget maintained their value by increasing them by statutory indexation. As a result in 2000-01, someone aged 65 to 74 can have an income of £111 a week before paying tax. This Government are committed to supporting older people. We will be spending an extra £6.5 billion on pensioners in the course of this Parliament.

Child Tax Credit

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much it costs to send out the forms to taxpayers in respect of child tax credit; and if he will make a statement. [128364]

Dawn Primarolo: The Inland Revenue sent out claim forms in June to all PAYE taxpayers who they thought might be eligible for the Child Tax Credit. The cost of doing this is estimated to be about £1.7 million.

Environmental Taxation

Mr. Bruce George: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many companies have used the mechanism which allows them to contribute 20 per cent. of their tax obligations to environmental bodies. [128318]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 3 July 2000]: Operators of landfill sites who are registered for landfill tax may claim tax credits for contributions that they make to support environmental projects. There are currently 850 registered operators. Of these, 494 have made contributions representing 91 per cent. of the potential amount available as tax credits.

Individual Savings Accounts

Mr. Loughton: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment he has made of the number of new ISA accounts opened by savers who did not previously hold (a) PEPs or (b) TESSAs. [129027]

Miss Melanie Johnson [holding answer 4 July 2000]: Detailed information on each ISA opened has to be sent to the Inland Revenue by ISA managers after the end of each tax year. The information for 1999-2000 has not yet been received from all ISA managers. When all this has arrived, the Inland Revenue will be able to start the analysis which will determine how many ISA savers do not also have TESSAs and PEPs.

Cruickshank Report

Mr. Hawkins: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on (a) the Cruickshank report on anti-fraud aspects of the future development of credit card technology and (b) representations by Europay and its members on the technical basis underlying the report. [128932]

Miss Melanie Johnson [holding answer 4 July 2000]: The Government have consulted and received responses from a number of organisations about the Cruikshank report's recommendations on payment systems. While some of these have referred to fraud issues the responses have tended to focus on the broader competition issues raised in the report.

Climate Change Levy

Mr. Russell Brown: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assistance he will provide for micro

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businesses that will not benefit from the reduction in National Insurance contributions to address the impact of the climate change levy. [128935]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 5 July 2000]: Small and medium-sized firms stand well placed to benefit from a number of the features of the climate change levy package, notably the reduction in employers' National Insurance Contributions, the enhanced capital allowances for energy savings investments and the £50 million 'energy efficiency' fund. In particular, one of the specific aims of the £50 million 'energy efficiency' fund is to provide energy efficiency advice/audits to small and medium sized firms. Furthermore, firms that are very small consumers of energy--as set out in Schedule 6 of the Finance Bill--will be covered by the exemption for the domestic sector, and will therefore not be subject to the climate change levy.

Petroleum Product Smuggling

Mr. Swinney: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is his latest estimate of revenue lost due to the (a) cross-border purchasing and (b) smuggling of road fuels in Northern Ireland; and what are his latest estimates for the volume of legitimate fuel imports from the Republic of Ireland to (i) Northern Ireland and (ii) Great Britain. [128183]

Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 5 July 2000]: I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer I gave to the hon. Member for Lewes (Mr. Baker) on 20 March 2000, Official Report, 442W.

HM Customs and Excise do not have information on which to base estimates for the volume of commercial- scale legitimate fuel imports from the Republic of Ireland to Northern Ireland and Great Britain.

Fuel Duty

Mr. Swinney: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish the most recent figures for road fuel duty levels in (a) the Republic of Ireland and (b) the United Kingdom, in sterling; and if he will estimate the additional duty for (i) a motorist to fill a tank of petrol in an average car and (ii) a haulier to fill a tank of diesel in an average lorry in (1) Northern Ireland and (2) the Republic of Ireland. [128184]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 5 July 2000]: The rates of excise duty for the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland are published in the European Commission's Oils Bulletin, which is kept in the House of Commons Library.

Financial Service Authority

Mrs. Lawrence: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he expects the annual report of the Financial Services Authority to be published. [129789]

Miss Melanie Johnson: A copy of the Board's report was laid before Parliament today. It includes a report, pursuant to Section 1(3) of the Banking Act 1987, on the exercise of the Authority's functions under that Act, during the period 1 April 1999 to 31 March 2000. It also includes the report made by the FSA under section 117 of

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the Financial Services Act 1986, covering the period 1 April 1999 to 31 March 2000. Copies are available in the Library of the House.

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