To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer
(1) what assessment he has made of the impact of the aggregates tax upon each local authority in the United Kingdom in respect of the cost of purchasing aggregates for construction and maintenance work;
(2) what impact the aggregates tax will have on actual costs to the end user;
(3) what assessment he has made of the impact of the imposition of the aggregates tax from April 2002 on (a) the importation of aggregates, (b) the number of small quarries and (c) the use of road transport for transportation of aggregates.
Budget 2000 announced that the Government had decided to introduce an aggregates levy with effect from April 2002. It will be charged at £1.60 per tonne on the commercial exploitation of primary aggregates in the UK, including those imported from abroad. Aggregates exported from the UK will be exempt.
A full Regulatory Impact Assessment was published at the time of Budget 2000.
A higher price of primary aggregate will provide an incentive to all users, including the public sector, to make more efficient use of aggregates and better use of recycled aggregates as an alternative. The impact on the actual costs to the end user will be dependent on the commercial decisions of aggregates suppliers.