Development Values

Oral Answers to Questions — Colonial Empire – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th October 1949.

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Photo of Wing Commander Geoffrey Cooper Wing Commander Geoffrey Cooper , Middlesbrough West 12:00 am, 26th October 1949

asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies, in view of the developments now being sponsored in many Colonies, what steps he proposes to take to ensure that the increase in development values accrues to the Colonial Governments and not to private interests.

Mr. Creech Jones:

The principal way in which Colonial Governments benefit from the increased values due to development activity is through the taxation system, and as the hon. Member will be aware, there has been a substantial increase in the incidence of the principal taxes in recent years.

Photo of Wing Commander Geoffrey Cooper Wing Commander Geoffrey Cooper , Middlesbrough West

If my right hon. Friend accepts the principle that any increase in land values resulting from private enterprise does not benefit the public or the community, will he consider using his influence to get the Colonial Governments to introduce legislation where necessary so that this can occur?

Mr. Creech Jones:

That is, of course, a matter for the Colonial Government, but obviously the system of land tenure in the territories is very complex, and one cannot easily apply a system which is suitable here to conditions of land-holdings in the Colonies.