Finance (No. 2) Bill — Rates of duties and rebates — 28 Apr 1998

Clause 1 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

I beg to move amendment No. 12, in page 3, line 39, leave out '£0.4926', and insert '£0.48'.

Even in the context of a tax-raising Budget, the impost on road fuels was particularly savage. The amendment seeks to moderate the increase to bring it back into line with the so-called escalator that we left behind when we lost office. The private motorist and commercial road users face steep increases, and, as ever, the Library has been helpful in working out the implications of the new transport fuels policy that was announced in the Budget.

The increase in the escalator from 5 to 6 per cent. in real terms, the fact that the Government have brought forward the implementation date, and an extra increase in the duty on diesel and super unleaded petrol, add up to an additional tax burden of £9 billion over this Parliament. By any standard, that is a huge additional burden, and it is an inefficient way to reduce car use, if that was the intention. Of course it has an effect on the private motorist and a most unfortunate effect on those in rural areas where many people must have cars--there is no realistic alternative to the car for getting to work or for use in the course of daily routine. Against the huge, almost staggering, increase in the overall tax burden, the £50 million that is to be allocated to rural bus services over three years is gesture politics at its worst. It is an insult to people who live in those areas.

Mr. Dafydd Wigley (Caernarfon):

Does the right hon. Gentleman agree that the burden will hit rural areas at a particularly inopportune time, in view of the severe decline in farm incomes? A reduction of 89 per cent. has been reported in a study in Wales in the past year. This is the worst time for such additional impositions to be placed on rural areas.

Would the right hon. Gentleman like to comment on that?

Question put, That the amendment be made:--

The Committee divided: Ayes 139, Noes 271.

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Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 103 (+2 tell)064.8%
Independent Conservative1 00100.0%
Lab270 (+2 tell) 0065.2%
LDem0 25054.3%
PC0 40100.0%
SNP0 60100.0%
UUP0 1010.0%
Total:271 139064.1%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

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no rebellions

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