House of Commons debates

Tuesday, 16 March 1993

  • Preamble

    The House met at half-past Two o'clock

  • Prayers

    [MADAM SPEAKER in the Chair]

  • Oral Answers to Questions — Employment

    • TEC Courses (Sheffield)

      10 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what percentage of students entering TEC courses in the Sheffield area (a) complete their course and (b) obtain employment when they finish.

    • Labour Statistics

      9 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment if she will give figures on employment levels in manufacturing industry in each year since 1979.

      Labour Statistics

      12 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what measures she intends to bring foward to assist the unemployed in the east midlands.

      Jobcentres (Gloucestershire)

      4 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how effective the jobcentres in Gloucestershire have been in placing people back into work.

      Child Care (West Midlands)

      4 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what steps the TECs have taken to encourage the provision of child care in the west midlands.

      Job Clubs (Wales)

      6 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what assessment she has made of the performance of job clubs in Wales.

      Working Carers

      6 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what attention her Department is giving to the needs of those who work and also care for relatives.

      Work in the Community

      8 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what plans she has to encourage work in the community.


      8 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment how many unfilled vacancies are currently recorded by her Department; and what is the extent of duplication of these numbers where vacancies are...


      10 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what research her Department is currently undertaking into workfare; and if she will make a statement.


      8 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what assessment she has made of the need for retraining of those in jobs to meet present and future job requirements.

      Low Pay

      10 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what is her estimate of the numbers working in the public sector earning less than the Council of Europe's low pay threshold analysed between (a)...

      Redundancies (West Midlands)

      8 speeches

      Mr. Robert Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what was the total number of redundancies in the west midlands in the last quarter for which figures are available.

      Unemployment (East Hertfordshire)

      6 speeches

      To ask the Secretary of State for Employment what measures she is bringing forward to assist the unemployed in east Hertfordshire.

  • Oral Answers to Questions — Prime Minister

  • Ways and Means

    • Budget Statement

      2 speeches

      Before I call the Chancellor of the Exchequer, it may be for the convenience of hon. Members if I remind them that, at the end of the Chancellor's speech, copies of the Budget resolutions will be...

    • World Economic Background

      It is impossible to review the short-term prospects for the British economy without first considering what is happening in the world outside. Many people talk as if Britain's economic problems...

      United Kingdom Economy

      While activity has been falling in many parts of the world, GDP in Britain rose slightly in the second half of last year. With interest rates down by four percentage points in just six months,...

      Short Term Prospects

      In my Mansion House speech, I announced the establishment of the panel of independent forecasters. My intention in doing so was to demonstrate more clearly that the judgments the Government have...

      The Medium Term

      The key to an improved trade performance lies in the competitiveness of our products, and the signs are encouraging. Earnings are now growing more slowly than at any time for 25 years. Labour...

      Supply Side Policy

      Supply side improvements are seldom the stuff of headlines, but the policies that this Government have pursued have begun to improve the way that markets work. We have transferred to private...

      Inflation and Monetary Policy

      However, if long-term improvements in economic performance are determined largely by the supply side, we have seen all too often in the past 20 years how short-term prospects can be blown off...


      I turn now to funding, a subject of peculiar fascination for many City commentators and of particular interest to a number of my right hon. and hon. Friends. The Government's full fund policy...

      Fiscal Policy

      In controlling inflation, monetary policy must of course be supported by a sustainable fiscal policy. I expect a PSBR in the current financial year of £35 billion—slightly lower than...

      Budget Judgment

      In doing so I have had to balance two key objectives: first, the essential task of helping recovery; secondly, the need to tackle the deficit so that the recovery will be sustained. I believe...

      Revenue Measures 1993–94

      Taxation Objectives

      The proposals I shall be announcing today are part of a continuing programme of tax reform—a programme which has strengthened work incentives and improved the efficiency of the economy. In...


      The first is income tax. With inflation down to levels not seen for a generation, I propose for the year ahead to freeze the personal allowances, the married couple's and related allowances, the...

      Excise Duties

      The second is excise duties. The removal of customs controls at the channel has been welcomed by many thousands of travellers who are now seeing the benefits of the single market at first hand....

      Fuel Scales

      Alongside the increase in fuel duties, I propose to increase by 20 per cent. the scale charges for free fuel supplied to company car drivers for private use. I also propose to abolish the 50 per...

      Company Cars and Vans

      I turn next to the tax treatment of company cars. From its introduction in 1976 until 1988, the income tax charge on company cars significantly under-estimated their true value. Since then,...


      In addition, I intend to close a number of loopholes which have been exploited by people to avoid tax. First, from midnight last night I propose to exclude from the business expansion scheme all...


      Before leaving my proposals for 1993–94, I wish to make clear the position on stamp duties on securities and property other than land and buildings. Following the decision by the Stock...

      Revenue Measures 1994–95 and Beyond

      Before I turn to business taxes, I intend to set out my tax proposals for 1994–95 and the years thereafter. As I have already explained, these tax proposals will build up over the years,...

      National Insurance Contributions

      In my autumn statement, I took some tough decisions on current spending to maintain capital programmes, but, to protect the poorest and most vulnerable members of society, we also decided to...

      North Sea Fiscal Regime

      One of the main objectives of this Government's tax reforms has been to eliminate tax rules which distort investment decisions. This was the driving force, for example, behind the far-reaching...

      Relocation Expenses

      I turn now to another area where reform is long overdue—the tax treatment of job-related relocation expenses.

      Mortgage Interest Relief

      I turn now to mortgage interest relief. The rapid expansion of home ownership is one of this Government's most enduring achievements, and I have no plans to change the existing ceiling for...

      Green Measures

      2 speeches

      In recent years, there has been much debate on the subject of global warming and the role that tax measures can play in combating it. This has led the European Commission to propose a...


      Self-Assessment and Simplification

      As the House is aware, the Government have embarked on a major drive to reduce the burden of regulation on industry. I will therefore start with three significant measures of deregulation, which...

      Statutory Audit

      My third announcement is of particular interest to smaller businesses.

      Business Taxes

      Reducing the Government's borrowing requirement will benefit business by ensuring that the recovery is sustained, but, as I said in my Mansion House speech last October, the Government are...

      Surplus Act and the Taxation of Dividends

      In discussions with business organisations over the last few months, one issue has come up again and again—the problem of surplus advance corporation tax, or ACT. Many believe that this...

      Export Credit

      The House will be relieved to hear that my next measure is a little less opaque, but it is equally important for the long-term success of British manufacturing.


      Over the years, one of Britain's most successful exporting industries has been insurance, but for some years now the industry has argued that the tax reliefs available to some of their European...


      I also propose to introduce a significant reform of the tax regime for Lloyd's. I propose to tax the gains on the disposal of assets which form the premiums funds of Lloyd's names in the same way...

      Small Business

      The measures I have announced so far will be of help particularly to large businesses, but small firms play a crucial role in our economy. Small businesses do not follow the economy; they lead...

      Loan Guarantee Scheme

      Following heavy losses in recent years, the banks are bound to be more cautious in their lending in future. Moreover, the fall in property prices has reduced the security for many of their loans....

      CGT Reform

      My second measure relates specifically to entrepreneurs who have built up successful businesses and now wish to sell them in order to start up a new one.

      Vat Threshold

      I turn now to the VAT regime, which for many small businesses takes up a great deal of time and can be a particular source of worry. The best way to help is to keep them out of the VAT system...

      Cash Accounting and Bad Debt Relief

      Over the past couple of years, I have also announced measures to allow traders to reclaim VAT on debts which remain unpaid after 12 months, and to encourage firms to take advantage of the cash...

      Vat Penalties

      In addition, I have a further series of reforms to propose to the current system of VAT penalties.

      Keith Report

      I have one final reform of the VAT penalty system. Following Lord Keith's 1983 review, the Government concluded that it would be wrong to give Customs discretion over the level of VAT penalties....


      I have already announced my intention to extend value added tax to domestic fuel and power from 1 April next year. I have one further announcement to make on VAT.


      I have one final announcement, which will be of direct help to many businesses.

      National Lottery and Charities

      The House is aware, also, of the Government's plans to introduce a national lottery from next year. This will provide a substantial increase in resources for a number of good causes: charities,...

      Employment Measures

      In the autumn statement, the Government announced a number of measures to help the unemployed, and in my Budget I have set out my further proposals to help business and sustain recovery. That it...

      Private Finance

      Mr. Deputy Speaker, in my autumn statement I announced significant changes to the rules for the private financing of major infrastructure projects. This initiative has met with an enthusiastic...

      Income Tax

      I turn finally to income tax. My priority in this Budget has been to set out a clear strategy for reducing public sector borrowing over the medium term. I am therefore unable this year to reduce...


      In the first Budget of this Parliament, I have set out the Government's economic strategy. I have cut the tax burden on business; and given help for small businesses, exports and the unemployed....

      Provisional Collection of Taxes

      1 speech

      Motion made, and Question,That, pursuant to section 5 of the Provisional Collection of Taxes Act 1968, provisional statutory effect shall be given to the following motions:— (a) Beer (rate:...

  • Budget Resolutions and Economic Situation

    • Amendment of the Law

      54 speeches

      Motion made, and Question proposed,That it is expedient to amend the law with respect to the National Debt and the public revenue and to make further provision in connection with finance; but...

  • Billy Harris

    4 speeches

    Motion made, and Question proposed, That this House do now adjourn—[Mr. Kirkhope.]

What is this?

Debates in the House of Commons are an opportunity for MPs from all parties to scrutinise government legislation and raise important local, national or topical issues.

And sometimes to shout at each other.

March 1993
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