Clause 74 - Reference documents: amount of import duty

Finance (No. 2) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:00 pm on 5 January 2022.

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

Photo of Lucy Frazer Lucy Frazer The Financial Secretary to the Treasury

The clause simplifies the way that technical updates are made to the UK’s tariff schedule. This measure inserts a new provision into the Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018 so that changes to the UK’s tariff schedule that do not alter the tariff duty rates applied to imported goods can be made by public notice rather than by secondary legislation, as is currently the case.

The clause will ensure that routine technical changes to tariff legislation, such as changing the codes used to classify goods or removing redundant codes, can be implemented more easily and quickly for those who refer to the legislation. Importantly, this measure also reduces the burden on parliamentary time in considering routine technical changes, while maintaining Parliament’s current levels of scrutiny of tariff duty rate changes.

In summary, the clause amends the Taxation (Cross-border Trade) Act 2018 so that technical changes can be made by public notice, thus ensuring simpler and quicker implementation of those changes to the UK’s tariff schedule.

Photo of Abena Oppong-Asare Abena Oppong-Asare Shadow Exchequer Secretary (Treasury)

This relatively minor change allows technical updates to the tariff schedule to be made by public notice rather than secondary legislation. Given that there are safeguards to ensure that substantive changes, such as varying the rate of import duty, continue to be made by regulation and are therefore subject to parliamentary oversight, we do not oppose the clause.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 74 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.