European Community Policies

Part of Oral Answers to Questions — Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th June 1985.

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Photo of Malcolm Rifkind Malcolm Rifkind Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) 12:00 am, 26th June 1985

Although we agree with the broad thrust of Lord Cockfield's proposals, we have made it clear, as have several other Governments, that the case for tax harmonisation has not been proven. We do not believe that the achievement of an internal market requires the harmonisation or approximation of taxes, and we have pointed to the example of the United States, many of whose 50 states have different direct and indirect taxes, which in no way impedes the operation of a free internal market there. I assure my hon. Friend that the Government have no intention of introducing VAT on food.