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17 Dec 2008 : Column 1153
3.50 pm

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Stephen Timms): Over the past year, major shocks have hit the economies of every country in the world, and the economic and fiscal climate is exceptionally challenging, but the macro-economic framework that we put in place in 1997 means that we face these shocks from a strong foundation. Our priority is to support the economy—to support families and businesses—through these difficult times. We are navigating a path to get Britain through this in the best possible shape, and to do it in a way that is fair to everyone. Therefore, in the pre-Budget report, my right hon. Friend the Chancellor set out measures to help businesses and home owners, and to boost people’s incomes now.

We are acting by putting money into the economy now so that we come out of this situation sooner and stronger. We have set out how, once the economy is growing again, we will deal with the public finance problems caused by the credit crunch in a way that, again, is fair to everybody. We are acting now, unlike the Opposition, who would turn their backs on families and businesses at just the time they need support most. We are acting, because if we do not act now it will cost more—it will cost more to the economy, more to the public finances and more to society.

Mr. Philip Hammond: Would the Minister tell the House about the 18.5 per cent .VAT proposal, because his signature was on the document that was published? The Chancellor said that many proposals were considered, so can the Minister tell us whether regulatory impact assessments were prepared for all sorts of other VAT level proposals? Was his signature appended to them all?

Mr. Timms: I am delighted that the hon. Gentleman has given me the opportunity to set the record straight on the Floor of the House. The Chancellor has made it clear repeatedly that he considered, as any Chancellor would, a large number of options about every aspect of tax and spending, as the House would expect. I ask the hon. Gentleman to look at the incorrect impact assessment that appeared on the website, because if he were to do so, he would see that I had not, in fact, signed that document. The Leader of the Opposition said that I had signed it, but my name had been typed in a sort of italic, slightly floral typeface under the following phrase:

I cannot see how anyone could have mistaken that for my signature, and I am pleased to have had the chance to put that on the record.

My right hon. Friend the Member for Birkenhead (Mr. Field) rightly drew attention to today’s unemployment figures, because they underline just how vital these measures are and how vital a stimulus now is. If the Conservatives, when in government, had introduced a fiscal stimulus of similar scale at the same point in the previous economic downturn, it would have saved some 300,000 jobs—but they did not. They did nothing; they let the recession run its course, as some of them are arguing should happen again now. The nation remembers the enduring damage that was the result: businesses needlessly destroyed, jobs unnecessarily lost and people remaining workless today as a direct consequence of the failings then.

17 Dec 2008 : Column 1154

Mr. Graham Stuart: Will the Minister answer the point made by the hon. Member for Wolverhampton, South-West (Rob Marris) about why the House did not debate a proposal of such importance before it was implemented?

Mr. Timms: Parliament has decided, in primary legislation, that a reduction to the VAT rate can be made before debate in Parliament, and that is what we have done.

Our actions will be different from those of the Opposition when in government. We will bring forward £3 billion of capital investment from 2010-11 to this year and next to increase capacity in the rail network, with new carriages, and in the motorway network; to improve social housing and build new homes; to renew primary and secondary schools; and to increase energy efficiency. It will put people to work, it will renovate infrastructure and it will support jobs in key industries. It will also help to put money into the economy in the coming months.

However, to prevent the recession from deepening, we need to do more to put money into the economy immediately. There is a widespread international consensus that a fiscal stimulus to help the economy is the right thing to do. It is backed by parties of both left and right on every continent, by the major countries of the world, by the international institutions such as the IMF—whose chief executive has been very forthright on the subject—by the business groups such as the CBI and the Institute of Directors, the Bank of England and many more.

Kelvin Hopkins (Luton, North) (Lab): I agree with the idea of a fiscal stimulus, although I would go further and make it bigger. I am puzzled, however, by why the Government have chosen to put money into reducing VAT. That £12.5 billion could have been put directly into the pockets of state pensioners and of families with children, and directly into infrastructure investment that would create jobs now. Would not that have been a much more efficient way to counter the recession?

Mr. Timms: We have done every one of the things that my hon. Friend has just listed, including, for example, the £60 payment to pensioners in the new year. We considered a wide range of options for the character of the stimulus. We wanted a measure that would help everyone, including millions of households that pay no direct tax at all. I point out to the hon. Member for Twickenham (Dr. Cable) that changing income tax would not help at all, because some people, such as pensioners, do not pay it. We wanted a much needed extra injection of spending into the economy right now. An effective stimulus needs also to be temporary.

This statutory instrument provides the much-needed stimulus by reducing the standard rate of VAT for just over a year with effect from 1 December. This temporary reduction is equivalent to the Government giving back some £12.5 billion to consumers to boost the economy. The Treasury forecast of the impact makes the cautious assumption that around half of the extra money will be put back into the economy while the rest is saved or spent on other goods.

As my hon. Friend asks, why did we choose VAT rather than other taxes? As we intended, we have already seen retailers pass on the reduction in the lead up to Christmas. I am delighted to hear that Randalls in
17 Dec 2008 : Column 1155
Uxbridge implemented the reduction the following day, and others did so just ahead of its introduction, with cheaper goods and services. It is too early of course to make an assessment of the impact, but I did notice that the director of selling operations for John Lewis spoke of

By encouraging spending, this temporary rate change will certainly help stimulate growth.

Michael Fabricant (Lichfield) (Con): As the Minister will be aware, the managing director of John Lewis, Andy Street, has said that the 2.5 per cent. discount simply meant a delay in high street purchases that was made up the following week. If the Minister had continued the quote from the selling director, it was clear that he was making the same point.

Mr. Timms: But the key point is that a typical family spends £900 per month on VATable goods, and for them, if the reduction is fully passed on, the tax cut means that their spending last month would leave them an additional £20 at the end of this month, and every month to the end of this year, or—as my hon. Friend the Member for Warwick and Leamington (Mr. Plaskitt) said—almost £300 in total. That is a fair way to deliver the stimulus because lower income households spend a larger share of their income on VAT than higher income households. It is particularly helpful for families on a tight budget and it will provide the vital stimulus that we need.

Rob Marris: I shall join the Government in the Lobby tonight, but I am concerned about the increase in excise duty on alcohol, which will adversely affect Marston’s brewery in my constituency. I am also concerned about the constitutional propriety of putting up taxes such as excise duty without this House’s voting on them first. What is the constitutional legal position on that?

Mr. Timms: Parliament has decided that it should be permissible to do exactly what we have done. The decision was made by Parliament.

Mr. Nigel Dodds (Belfast, North) (DUP): Will the Minister confirm that if the motion were to be supported that would effectively impose a tax increase on consumers and households across the country?

Mr. Timms: The hon. Gentleman is absolutely right, of course. I think that that would be a very unwelcome move.

Mr. Randall: Will the Financial Secretary give way?

Mr. Timms: Since I have mentioned the hon. Gentleman’s shop, I shall give way to him.

Mr. Randall: Would the Minister advise my constituents who are particularly worried about their jobs, as well as the constituents of every other right hon. and hon. Member, to spend more or to save?

Mr. Timms: That is a matter for every household to decide. It depends on the situation in which the household finds itself. I am certain that a very large number of people will choose to spend the £20 extra that they will have, on average, at the end of the month, but others will choose to save it and to rebuild their household finances. Of course, it is perfectly appropriate for them to do so.

17 Dec 2008 : Column 1156

I want to respond to some of the points that we have heard in the debate. Unsurprisingly, we have heard some comments about Germany, which the hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr. Hammond) mentioned. The key is to look at what the German Government are actually doing. Germany has borrowings that are significantly greater than those of the UK. On 5 November, Germany announced a €32 billion fiscal stimulus—a larger stimulus, proportionately, than that in the UK. I refer the hon. Gentleman and others to what the German Chancellor said last week:


On Monday, the German Economy Minister said that Germany had an obligation to introduce new measures to stimulate its economy. He wants Germany to introduce tax measures totalling €25 billion next year. The chief economist of DekaBank, Ulrich Kater, made the point that reducing VAT would have been more efficient than the methods that have been adopted. In Germany, the key is to look beyond some of the words to see the decisions that are being made.

This move is the right stimulus for families, for businesses and for the UK economy and I commend the order to the House.

4.3 pm

Dr. Cable: I thank the Minister for giving me 100 seconds to respond to a long and complex debate. I shall not say a great deal about his contribution. He got off to a good start by reminding us about the 1997 fiscal framework and suggested to me that chutzpah is a necessary qualification for being a Treasury Minister, which he has now done twice.

There were two major contributions to the debate, and I just want to respond to the right hon. Member for Birkenhead (Mr. Field) and the Conservative spokesman, who brought up two major issues. First, of course this is all overshadowed by the banking system and the lack of credit, and that is what we have to focus on. I have spoken about that volubly and at length, so I totally agree with that. The subject of what exactly we should do is more controversial. The Conservative proposal for guaranteed credit may have an important role, but, as I pointed out on Monday, if it is to work it effectively means the nationalisation of credit. That, of course, would have major public finance implications that I do not think they have yet thought through.

The other major issue is whether we believe that any fiscal stimulus is necessary. I am perfectly willing to entertain the dangerous idea that the hon. Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr. Hammond) and the right hon. Member for Birkenhead may be right and that such a stimulus may not work. If that is so, however, they should be in Washington, not lecturing us here.

What is being proposed is just the faintest echo of what is happening throughout the western world, and especially in the US. The American Congress and the new US Administration are preparing a stimulus that is about 30 times as big as the British stimulus, in a context of even weaker public finances than ours. If it does not work, the consequences for the western economies will be catastrophic. As I said—

17 Dec 2008 : Column 1157
4.5 pm

One and a half hours having elapsed since the commencement of proceedings on the motion, the Deputy Speaker put the Question (Standing Order No. 16(1)).

The House divided: Ayes 223, Noes 303.
Division No. 9]
[4.05 pm


Afriyie, Adam
Ainsworth, Mr. Peter
Alexander, Danny
Amess, Mr. David
Ancram, rh Mr. Michael
Arbuthnot, rh Mr. James
Atkinson, Mr. Peter
Bacon, Mr. Richard
Baker, Norman
Baldry, Tony
Barker, Gregory
Baron, Mr. John
Barrett, John
Beith, rh Sir Alan
Bellingham, Mr. Henry
Bercow, John
Beresford, Sir Paul
Binley, Mr. Brian
Blunt, Mr. Crispin
Boswell, Mr. Tim
Brady, Mr. Graham
Brake, Tom
Brazier, Mr. Julian
Breed, Mr. Colin
Brokenshire, James
Browne, Mr. Jeremy
Browning, Angela
Bruce, rh Malcolm
Burns, Mr. Simon
Burrowes, Mr. David
Burstow, Mr. Paul
Burt, Alistair
Burt, Lorely
Butterfill, Sir John
Cable, Dr. Vincent
Cameron, rh Mr. David
Campbell, rh Sir Menzies
Carmichael, Mr. Alistair
Carswell, Mr. Douglas
Cash, Mr. William
Chope, Mr. Christopher
Clappison, Mr. James
Clark, Greg
Clarke, rh Mr. Kenneth
Clegg, rh Mr. Nick
Clifton-Brown, Mr. Geoffrey
Conway, Derek
Crabb, Mr. Stephen
Curry, rh Mr. David
Davey, Mr. Edward
Davies, David T.C. (Monmouth)
Davies, Philip
Djanogly, Mr. Jonathan
Dorrell, rh Mr. Stephen
Duncan, Alan
Duncan Smith, rh Mr. Iain
Dunne, Mr. Philip
Ellwood, Mr. Tobias
Evennett, Mr. David
Fabricant, Michael
Fallon, Mr. Michael
Farron, Tim
Featherstone, Lynne
Field, rh Mr. Frank
Field, Mr. Mark
Foster, Mr. Don
Francois, Mr. Mark
Gale, Mr. Roger
Garnier, Mr. Edward
George, Andrew
Gibb, Mr. Nick
Gidley, Sandra
Gillan, Mrs. Cheryl
Goldsworthy, Julia
Goodman, Mr. Paul
Goodwill, Mr. Robert
Gove, Michael
Gray, Mr. James
Grayling, Chris
Green, Damian
Greening, Justine
Greenway, Mr. John
Grieve, Mr. Dominic
Gummer, rh Mr. John
Hague, rh Mr. William
Hammond, Mr. Philip
Hancock, Mr. Mike
Hands, Mr. Greg
Harper, Mr. Mark
Harris, Dr. Evan
Harvey, Nick
Hayes, Mr. John
Heath, Mr. David
Heathcoat-Amory, rh Mr. David
Hemming, John
Hendry, Charles
Herbert, Nick
Hoban, Mr. Mark
Hogg, rh Mr. Douglas
Hollobone, Mr. Philip
Holloway, Mr. Adam
Holmes, Paul
Hopkins, Kelvin
Horam, Mr. John
Horwood, Martin
Howard, rh Mr. Michael
Howarth, David
Howarth, Mr. Gerald
Howell, John
Hughes, Simon
Huhne, Chris
Hunt, Mr. Jeremy
Hunter, Mark
Hurd, Mr. Nick
Jack, rh Mr. Michael
Jackson, Mr. Stewart
Jenkin, Mr. Bernard
Jones, Mr. David
Kawczynski, Daniel
Keetch, Mr. Paul
Kennedy, rh Mr. Charles
Key, Robert
Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Knight, rh Mr. Greg

Kramer, Susan
Laing, Mrs. Eleanor
Lait, Mrs. Jacqui
Lamb, Norman
Lansley, Mr. Andrew
Laws, Mr. David
Leech, Mr. John
Leigh, Mr. Edward
Letwin, rh Mr. Oliver
Liddell-Grainger, Mr. Ian
Lidington, Mr. David
Lilley, rh Mr. Peter
Loughton, Tim
Luff, Peter
Mackay, rh Mr. Andrew
Maclean, rh David
Main, Anne
Malins, Mr. Humfrey
Maples, Mr. John
Mates, rh Mr. Michael
Maude, rh Mr. Francis
May, rh Mrs. Theresa
McIntosh, Miss Anne
McLoughlin, rh Mr. Patrick
Mercer, Patrick
Miller, Mrs. Maria
Milton, Anne
Mitchell, Mr. Andrew
Mitchell, Mr. Austin
Moore, Mr. Michael
Moss, Mr. Malcolm
Mulholland, Greg
Mundell, David
Murrison, Dr. Andrew
Neill, Robert
Newmark, Mr. Brooks
O'Brien, Mr. Stephen
Oaten, Mr. Mark
Öpik, Lembit
Osborne, Mr. George
Ottaway, Richard
Paice, Mr. James
Paterson, Mr. Owen
Pelling, Mr. Andrew
Pugh, Dr. John
Randall, Mr. John
Redwood, rh Mr. John
Reid, Mr. Alan
Rennie, Willie
Rifkind, rh Sir Malcolm
Robathan, Mr. Andrew
Robertson, Hugh
Robertson, Mr. Laurence
Rogerson, Dan
Rosindell, Andrew
Ruffley, Mr. David
Sanders, Mr. Adrian
Scott, Mr. Lee
Selous, Andrew
Shapps, Grant
Shepherd, Mr. Richard
Simpson, Mr. Keith
Smith, Sir Robert
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spink, Bob
Stanley, rh Sir John
Steen, Mr. Anthony
Stuart, Mr. Graham
Stunell, Andrew
Swayne, Mr. Desmond
Swire, Mr. Hugo
Syms, Mr. Robert
Taylor, Mr. Ian
Taylor, Matthew
Teather, Sarah
Thurso, John
Tredinnick, David
Turner, Mr. Andrew
Tyrie, Mr. Andrew
Vaizey, Mr. Edward
Vara, Mr. Shailesh
Viggers, Sir Peter
Villiers, Mrs. Theresa
Walker, Mr. Charles
Wallace, Mr. Ben
Walter, Mr. Robert
Watkinson, Angela
Whittingdale, Mr. John
Wiggin, Bill
Willetts, Mr. David
Williams, Mr. Roger
Williams, Stephen
Willott, Jenny
Wilson, Mr. Rob
Winterton, Ann
Winterton, Sir Nicholas
Wright, Jeremy
Yeo, Mr. Tim
Young, rh Sir George
Tellers for the Ayes:

Bob Russell and
James Duddridge

Abbott, Ms Diane
Ainger, Nick
Alexander, rh Mr. Douglas
Allen, Mr. Graham
Anderson, Mr. David
Anderson, Janet
Armstrong, rh Hilary
Austin, Mr. Ian
Austin, John
Bailey, Mr. Adrian
Balls, rh Ed
Banks, Gordon
Barron, rh Mr. Kevin
Battle, rh John
Bayley, Hugh
Beckett, rh Margaret
Begg, Miss Anne
Benn, rh Hilary
Berry, Roger
Betts, Mr. Clive
Blackman, Liz
Blackman-Woods, Dr. Roberta
Blears, rh Hazel
Blizzard, Mr. Bob
Blunkett, rh Mr. David
Borrow, Mr. David S.
Bradshaw, Mr. Ben
Brennan, Kevin
Brown, Lyn
Brown, rh Mr. Nicholas
Brown, Mr. Russell
Browne, rh Des
Bryant, Chris
Buck, Ms Karen

Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Burnham, rh Andy
Butler, Ms Dawn
Byers, rh Mr. Stephen
Byrne, rh Mr. Liam
Caborn, rh Mr. Richard
Cairns, David
Campbell, Mr. Alan
Caton, Mr. Martin
Cawsey, Mr. Ian
Challen, Colin
Chapman, Ben
Chaytor, Mr. David
Clapham, Mr. Michael
Clark, Ms Katy
Clark, Paul
Clelland, Mr. David
Clwyd, rh Ann
Coaker, Mr. Vernon
Coffey, Ann
Cohen, Harry
Connarty, Michael
Cook, Frank
Cooper, rh Yvette
Corbyn, Jeremy
Cousins, Jim
Crausby, Mr. David
Creagh, Mary
Cruddas, Jon
Cryer, Mrs. Ann
Cunningham, Mr. Jim
Cunningham, Tony
Curtis-Thomas, Mrs. Claire
Darling, rh Mr. Alistair
David, Mr. Wayne
Davies, Mr. Dai
Dean, Mrs. Janet
Denham, rh Mr. John
Devine, Mr. Jim
Dhanda, Mr. Parmjit
Dismore, Mr. Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, rh Frank
Dodds, Mr. Nigel
Donohoe, Mr. Brian H.
Doran, Mr. Frank
Dowd, Jim
Drew, Mr. David
Eagle, Angela
Eagle, Maria
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs. Louise
Engel, Natascha
Ennis, Jeff
Farrelly, Paul
Fisher, Mark
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Flello, Mr. Robert
Flint, rh Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Follett, Barbara
Foster, Mr. Michael (Worcester)
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings and Rye)
Francis, Dr. Hywel
Gapes, Mike
Gardiner, Barry
George, rh Mr. Bruce
Gerrard, Mr. Neil
Gibson, Dr. Ian
Gilroy, Linda
Godsiff, Mr. Roger
Goggins, Paul
Goodman, Helen
Griffith, Nia
Griffiths, Nigel
Grogan, Mr. John
Gwynne, Andrew
Hain, rh Mr. Peter
Hall, Mr. Mike
Hall, Patrick
Hamilton, Mr. Fabian
Hanson, rh Mr. David
Harman, rh Ms Harriet
Harris, Mr. Tom
Havard, Mr. Dai
Healey, rh John
Henderson, Mr. Doug
Hendrick, Mr. Mark
Hepburn, Mr. Stephen
Heppell, Mr. John
Hesford, Stephen
Hewitt, rh Ms Patricia
Heyes, David
Hill, rh Keith
Hillier, Meg
Hodgson, Mrs. Sharon
Hoey, Kate
Hood, Mr. Jim
Hoon, rh Mr. Geoffrey
Hope, Phil
Hosie, Stewart
Howarth, rh Mr. George
Howells, Dr. Kim
Hoyle, Mr. Lindsay
Hughes, rh Beverley
Humble, Mrs. Joan
Hutton, rh Mr. John
Iddon, Dr. Brian
Ingram, rh Mr. Adam
Jackson, Glenda
James, Mrs. Siân C.
Jenkins, Mr. Brian
Johnson, Ms Diana R.
Jones, Helen
Jones, Mr. Kevan
Jones, Mr. Martyn
Joyce, Mr. Eric
Kaufman, rh Sir Gerald
Keeley, Barbara
Keen, Alan
Keen, Ann
Kemp, Mr. Fraser
Khan, Mr. Sadiq
Kidney, Mr. David
Knight, rh Jim
Kumar, Dr. Ashok
Ladyman, Dr. Stephen
Lammy, rh Mr. David
Lazarowicz, Mark
Lepper, David
Levitt, Tom
Linton, Martin
Lloyd, Tony
Llwyd, Mr. Elfyn
Love, Mr. Andrew
Lucas, Ian
Mackinlay, Andrew
MacNeil, Mr. Angus
MacShane, rh Mr. Denis
Mactaggart, Fiona
Malik, Mr. Shahid

Mallaber, Judy
Mann, John
Marris, Rob
Marsden, Mr. Gordon
Marshall-Andrews, Mr. Robert
Martlew, Mr. Eric
Mason, John
McAvoy, rh Mr. Thomas
McCafferty, Chris
McCarthy, Kerry
McCarthy-Fry, Sarah
McCartney, rh Mr. Ian
McDonagh, Siobhain
McDonnell, John
McFall, rh John
McGovern, Mr. Jim
McGuire, rh Mrs. Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McKenna, Rosemary
McNulty, rh Mr. Tony
Merron, Gillian
Michael, rh Alun
Miliband, rh David
Miliband, rh Edward
Miller, Andrew
Moffat, Anne
Moffatt, Laura
Moon, Mrs. Madeleine
Moran, Margaret
Morgan, Julie
Morley, rh Mr. Elliot
Mudie, Mr. George
Mullin, Mr. Chris
Munn, Meg
Murphy, Mr. Denis
Murphy, rh Mr. Jim
Murphy, rh Mr. Paul
Naysmith, Dr. Doug
Norris, Dan
O'Brien, Mr. Mike
O'Hara, Mr. Edward
Olner, Mr. Bill
Osborne, Sandra
Owen, Albert
Palmer, Dr. Nick
Pearson, Ian
Plaskitt, Mr. James
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Mr. Gordon
Price, Adam
Primarolo, rh Dawn
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Mr. Ken
Purnell, rh James
Rammell, Bill
Raynsford, rh Mr. Nick
Reed, Mr. Andy
Reid, rh John
Robertson, Angus
Robinson, rh Mr. Peter
Rooney, Mr. Terry
Roy, Mr. Frank
Roy, Lindsay
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Joan
Russell, Christine
Ryan, rh Joan
Salter, Martin
Seabeck, Alison
Sheridan, Jim
Simon, Mr. Siôn
Singh, Mr. Marsha
Skinner, Mr. Dennis
Slaughter, Mr. Andy
Smith, rh Mr. Andrew
Smith, Ms Angela C. (Sheffield, Hillsborough)
Smith, Angela E. (Basildon)
Smith, Geraldine
Smith, John
Snelgrove, Anne
Soulsby, Sir Peter
Southworth, Helen
Spellar, rh Mr. John
Starkey, Dr. Phyllis
Stoate, Dr. Howard
Strang, rh Dr. Gavin
Straw, rh Mr. Jack
Stringer, Graham
Stuart, Ms Gisela
Sutcliffe, Mr. Gerry
Tami, Mark
Taylor, Ms Dari
Taylor, David
Thomas, Mr. Gareth
Thornberry, Emily
Timms, rh Mr. Stephen
Tipping, Paddy
Touhig, rh Mr. Don
Trickett, Jon
Turner, Dr. Desmond
Turner, Mr. Neil
Twigg, Derek
Ussher, Kitty
Vaz, rh Keith
Walley, Joan
Waltho, Lynda
Ward, Claire
Watson, Mr. Tom
Watts, Mr. Dave
Weir, Mr. Mike
Whitehead, Dr. Alan
Wicks, rh Malcolm
Williams, rh Mr. Alan
Williams, Mrs. Betty
Williams, Hywel
Wills, rh Mr. Michael
Wilson, Sammy
Winnick, Mr. David
Winterton, rh Ms Rosie
Wood, Mike
Woodward, rh Mr. Shaun
Woolas, Mr. Phil
Wright, Mr. Anthony
Wright, David
Wright, Mr. Iain
Wyatt, Derek
Tellers for the Noes:

Chris Mole and
Steve McCabe
Question accordingly negatived.
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