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VAT Group

Church Commissioners written question – answered on 18th November 2003.

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Photo of Anne McIntosh Anne McIntosh Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs), Shadow Minister (Transport)

To ask the hon. Member for Middlesbrough, representing the Church Commissioners, if he will make a statement on his recent visit to Brussels with the Church of England VAT Group to meet (a) UK Permanent Representation officials and (b) Commissioner Bolkestein.

Photo of Stuart Bell Stuart Bell Second Church Estates Commissioner

The Church VAT Group was grateful for the chance to reiterate the case for a reduced rate of VAT for repairs and maintenance to listed places of worship during the recent visit to Brussels. The UK permanent representative office was very clear about the support of the UK Government for our case and their commitment to argue for it at every level up to the Council of Ministers.

Commissioner Bolkestein received our presentation with much interest. Clearly, with negotiations still ongoing, involving discussion of the many different EU Member States' aspirations, he was not prepared to anticipate what the final outcome would be during his meeting with us.

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