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Part of Bill Presented – in the House of Commons at 10:20 am on 29th November 1996.

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Photo of Mr Simon Coombs Mr Simon Coombs , Swindon 10:20 am, 29th November 1996

I hesitated a long time before interrupting the right hon. Gentleman as he is getting on very slowly and this intervention will only slow him down even more—I can see that there is a wodge more of his speech to come. Two years ago, the Labour party argued that the introduction of airport passenger duty was likely to lead to a massive diminution in the number of overseas visitors to this country. It has not done so. As my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State said, a massive increase coincided with its introduction. My suspicion is that the attractiveness of Britain is so great that it overcomes that sort of problem. So, the answer to the right hon. Gentleman's question is that those matters are broadly neutral.