asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what revised estimate of the yield of Purchase Tax he has made for the current financial year, on account of credit-squeeze conditions, compared with his original estimate of £535 millions last April; and, in particular, what was his original estimate, and what is now his revised estimate, of Purchase Tax yields for motor cars in the current financial year.
Does not my right hon. and learned Friend recall that on 22nd June last I proposed an Amendment to the Finance Bill to reduce Purchase Tax on motor cars from 50 per cent. to 37½ per cent., which led to a substantial number of hon. Members voting in Committee against the Government? In view of the present condition of the motor car industry, does my right hon. and learned Friend still adhere to the extraordinary view then expressed by the Financial Secretary to the Treasury that a reduction of Purchase Tax on cars by 12½ per cent. would stimulate the home demand beyond what the industry could meet and so encroach on our supplies for the export market?
The only comment I would make on my hon. Friend's supplementary question is that I think that these constant suggestions about Purchase Tax and the idea that I might yield to pressure can do nothing but unsettle prospective customers at this time. I cannot be drawn at this stage on this matter.