Clause 37 - Appeal Tribunals

Finance Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:00 pm on 20 May 2003.

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Photo of John Healey John Healey The Economic Secretary to the Treasury 3:00, 20 May 2003

I beg to move amendment No. 158, in

clause 37, page 28, line 4, leave out '35' and insert '36'.

Clause 37 provides for appeals against decisions by Customs and Excise to be settled by agreement. It also allows for the recovery of costs awarded against an appellant as though they were customs duty. It is sometimes possible to settle appeal cases by agreement rather than by resorting to a tribunal hearing. The provision, which will result in savings for all parties, mirrors the provisions in use in the VAT civil penalty regime.

I have written to the hon. Member for Eddisbury and other members of the Committee about Government amendment No. 158 explaining that an incorrect reference has unfortunately been included in the published clause. The clause should refer to section 36 of the proposed legislation but instead refers to section 35. The Government amendment therefore corrects the clerical error.

Photo of Stephen O'Brien Stephen O'Brien Shadow Paymaster General

I am grateful to the Economic Secretary for writing to all members of the Committee. We agree with the amendment, although I am cross that I had not spotted the mistake because I thought that I had read the Bill from cover to cover.

Amendment agreed to.

Clause 37, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.