Clause 13 - Interest on unpaid sums

Proceeds of Crime Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:15 am on 22 November 2001.

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Amendment made: No. 37, in page

7, line 6, at end insert-

`(2A) For the purposes of this section no amount is required to be paid under a confiscation order if-

(a) an application has been made under section 12(4),

(b) the application has not been determined by the court, and

(c) the period of 12 months starting with the day on which the confiscation order was made has not ended.'-[Mr. Foulkes.]

Question proposed, That the clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill.

Photo of David Wilshire David Wilshire Conservative, Spelthorne

We referred fairly regularly to some of the issues raised by clause 13 when we discussed clause 12, and I am concerned about one of them. The Minister said that interest would be paid at a fixed rate of 8 per cent. That might not be a relevant or accurate figure at the moment. However, if the rate is to be fixed irrespective of the economic circumstances, there will be a bit of rigidity in the Bill, which it should not have. Did the Minister mean that the rate would be fixed or that it would be fixed at 8 per cent. for the moment? I sincerely hope that the rate will reflect that payable elsewhere. If not, there will be a potential loophole because it might be cheaper for someone with large sums to borrow money in that way rather than another. I sincerely hope that the Minister will correct me and say that the rate will be fixed for the moment. Otherwise, I hope that he will say that it will be variable and that he will explain how it will be calculated and how it would alter.

Photo of Mr George Foulkes Mr George Foulkes Minister of State, Scottish Office, Minister of State (Scotland Office)

The record will show that I said that it is currently 8 per cent.

Photo of David Wilshire David Wilshire Conservative, Spelthorne

We shall see what the record says. I wrote down what I thought I heard-

It being twenty-five minutes past Eleven o'clock, The Chairman adjourned the Committee without Question put, pursuant to the Standing Order.

Adjourned till this day at half-past Two o'clock. {**vert_rule**}