Previous SectionIndexHome Page

Mr. Edward Davey: Of the number of people on low incomes who are being brought into the income tax net as a result of the freezing of personal income tax allowances, what proportion will gain from the Government's tax credit policies and what proportion will not benefit at all?

Dawn Primarolo: I shall be very careful in giving the answer, because I do not want to mislead the Committee on that matter, and I will check carefully whether I have answered the hon. Gentleman correctly.

The working tax credit, the child tax credit and the pension credit, linked to the minimum income guarantee for pensioners, the £200 a year allowance for heating and the changes that we have made to indexation for over-65s—[Interruption.] The hon. Gentleman knows that people on low income do not represent just one group. Presumably, he is expecting me to deal with the income of each and every group where there may be

8 May 2002 : Column 224

people on low incomes. The combination of all the measures I mentioned ensures that the very lowest incomes continue to increase the most. The hon. Gentleman can confirm that by studying the distributional impact charts in the Red Book and by talking to his hon. Friend the Member for Yeovil, who is a member of the Select Committee on the Treasury, one of whose recommendations dealt with the matter.

8.30 pm

The right hon. Member for Fylde made many interventions; the final one was to point out that we should do more about avoidance. That is rich coming from a party that tells us that we are introducing too much complexity and red tape to the tax system, while telling us that people who should pay tax are not doing so, even though when the Conservatives were in government they did nothing about that problem. If the right hon. Gentleman examines the Finance Bill, he will see that closing avoidance loopholes will raise £740 million next year and more than £1 billion in the following year, ensuring that those who try to avoid tax are encouraged to pay it.

Mr. Jack: The hon. Lady should consider her words carefully. She said that the previous Conservative Government did nothing about avoidance. She might remember that the last Finance Bill before the general election in 1997 included a range of measures that built on previous initiatives on the issue. We can debate their effectiveness in another place at another time, but the Conservative Government took action on many aspects of avoidance and the hon. Lady knows it.

Dawn Primarolo: The right hon. Gentleman referred specifically to VAT. I do not mind debating the record of his Government or scrutinising it, but I do not recall that they ever made an assessment of the problems of VAT fraud. I certainly remember that they got their forecasts wrong; there was one year when £6 billion of VAT receipts disappeared and could not be accounted for—[Interruption.] The right hon. Gentleman specifically raised VAT avoidance and I stand by what I have said. I do not recollect that his Government undertook the assessment that we have made, nor did they publish either figures or strategies as we have done under the able stewardship of my right hon. Friend the Financial Secretary.

For all the reasons that I have given—investment in public services, ensuring a fair contribution, an understanding of the decision to freeze allowances this year for the under-65s—I commend the clause to the Committee.

Question put, That the clause stand part of the Bill:—

The Committee divided: Ayes 257, Noes 187.

Division No. 228
[8.32 pm


Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, Bob (Cov'try NE)
Anderson, Rt Hon Donald
(Swansea E)
Anderson, Janet (Rossendale)
Atherton, Ms Candy
Austin, John
Bailey, Adrian
Baird, Vera
Banks, Tony
Barnes, Harry
Barron, Kevin
Bayley, Hugh
Beard, Nigel
Bennett, Andrew
Berry, Roger
Best, Harold
Betts, Clive
Blackman, Liz
Blears, Ms Hazel
Blizzard, Bob
Boateng, Rt Hon Paul
Borrow, David
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin)
Bradshaw, Ben
Brennan, Kevin
Brown, Rt Hon Nicholas
(Newcastle E & Wallsend)
Brown, Russell (Dumfries)
Bryant, Chris
Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Burnham, Andy
Cairns, David
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth)
Casale, Roger
Challen, Colin
Chaytor, David
Clapham, Michael
Clark, Mrs Helen (Peterborough)
Clark, Paul (Gillingham)
Clarke, Rt Hon Tom (Coatbridge)
Clarke, Tony (Northampton S)
Clelland, David
Coaker, Vernon
Cohen, Harry
Colman, Tony
Connarty, Michael
Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Cook, Rt Hon Robin (Livingston)
Corston, Jean
Cousins, Jim
Crausby, David
Cruddas, Jon
Cunningham, Rt Hon Dr Jack
Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Cunningham, Tony (Workington)
Curtis–Thomas, Mrs Claire
Dalyell, Tam
Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
David, Wayne
Davidson, Ian
Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)
Davies, Geraint (Croydon C)
Davis, Rt Hon Terry
(B'ham Hodge H)
Dawson, Hilton
Dean, Mrs Janet
Dhanda, Parmjit
Dismore, Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Donohoe, Brian H
Doran, Frank
Dowd, Jim
Drew, David
Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth
Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Eagle, Maria (L'pool Garston)
Edwards, Huw
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs Louise
Ennis, Jeff
Field, Rt Hon Frank (Birkenhead)
Fisher, Mark
Flint, Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Follett, Barbara
Foster, Rt Hon Derek
Foster, Michael (Worcester)
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
George, Rt Hon Bruce (Walsall S)
Gerrard, Neil
Gibson, Dr Ian
Gilroy, Linda
Godsiff, Roger
Griffiths, Jane (Reading E)
Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Grogan, John
Hall, Patrick (Bedford)
Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE)
Harris, Tom (Glasgow Cathcart)
Havard, Dai
Healey, John
Henderson, Doug (Newcastle N)
Henderson, Ivan (Harwich)
Hendrick, Mark
Hepburn, Stephen
Heppell, John
Heyes, David
Hill, Keith
Hinchliffe, David
Hood, Jimmy
Hopkins, Kelvin
Howarth, Rt Hon Alan (Newport E)
Howarth, George (Knowsley N)
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)
Hurst, Alan
Hutton, Rt Hon John
Illsley, Eric
Jamieson, David
Jenkins, Brian
Jones, Helen (Warrington N)
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)
Jones, Kevan (N Durham)
Joyce, Eric
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald
Keen, Alan (Feltham & Heston)
Kelly, Ruth
Khabra, Piara S
Kidney, David
Kilfoyle, Peter
King, Andy (Rugby & Kenilworth)
King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green)
Knight, Jim (S Dorset)
Kumar, Dr Ashok
Ladyman, Dr Stephen
Lawrence, Mrs Jackie
Laxton, Bob
Lazarowicz, Mark
Lepper, David
Levitt, Tom
Lewis, Terry (Worsley)
Linton, Martin
Lloyd, Tony
Love, Andrew
Lucas, Ian
Lyons, John
McAvoy, Thomas
McCabe, Stephen
McDonagh, Siobhain
MacDonald, Calum
McDonnell, John
MacDougall, John
McFall, John
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McNamara, Kevin
Mactaggart, Fiona
McWalter, Tony
McWilliam, John
Mahon, Mrs Alice
Mallaber, Judy
Mann, John
Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S)
Marshall, Jim (Leicester S)
Marshall–Andrews, Robert
Martlew, Eric
Meacher, Rt Hon Michael
Meale, Alan
Milburn, Rt Hon Alan
Miller, Andrew
Mitchell, Austin (Gt Grimsby)
Moffatt, Laura
Mole, Chris
Moran, Margaret
Mountford, Kali
Mudie, George
Mullin, Chris
Murphy, Denis (Wansbeck)
Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Naysmith, Dr Doug
O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
O'Hara, Edward
Olner, Bill
O'Neill, Martin
Palmer, Dr Nick
Perham, Linda
Picking, Anne
Pickthall, Colin
Pike, Peter
Plaskitt, James
Pope, Greg
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Primarolo, Dawn
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Ken
Purnell, James
Quin, Rt Hon Joyce
Rapson, Syd
Reed, Andy (Loughborough)
Robertson, John
(Glasgow Anniesland)
Rooney, Terry
Ross, Ernie
Roy, Frank
Ruddock, Joan
Russell, Ms Christine (Chester)
Salter, Martin
Savidge, Malcolm
Sedgemore, Brian
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheerman, Barry
Sheridan, Jim
Shipley, Ms Debra
Simon, Siôn
Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S)
Singh, Marsha
Skinner, Dennis
Smith, Rt Hon Andrew (Oxford E)
Smith, Angela (Basildon)
Smith, Rt Hon Chris (Islington S)
Smith, John (Glamorgan)
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
Soley, Clive
Southworth, Helen
Stevenson, George
Stewart, Ian (Eccles)
Stinchcombe, Paul
Strang, Rt Hon Dr Gavin
Stringer, Graham
Sutcliffe, Gerry
Tami, Mark
Taylor, Rt Hon Ann (Dewsbury)
Taylor, David (NW Leics)
Taylor, Dr Richard (Wyre F)
Thomas, Gareth (Clwyd W)
Tipping, Paddy
Todd, Mark
Touhig, Don
Trickett, Jon
Truswell, Paul
Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Turner, Neil (Wigan)
Tynan, Bill
Vaz, Keith
Vis, Dr Rudi
Walley, Ms Joan
Watson, Tom
Watts, David
White, Brian
Williams, Rt Hon Alan
(Swansea W)
Wills, Michael
Winnick, David
Worthington, Tony
Wray, James
Wright, Anthony D (Gt Yarmouth)
Wright, David (Telford)
Wright, Tony (Cannock)
Wyatt, Derek

Tellers for the Ayes:

Mr. Fraser Kemp and
Mr. Ian Pearson.


Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey)
Allan, Richard
Amess, David
Arbuthnot, Rt Hon James
Atkinson, David (Bour'mth E)
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)
Baker, Norman
Baldry, Tony
Barker, Gregory
Baron, John
Barrett, John
Beggs, Roy
Beith, Rt Hon A J
Bercow, John
Beresford, Sir Paul
Blunt, Crispin
Boswell, Tim
Bottomley, Peter (Worthing W)
Bottomley, Rt Hon Virginia
Brady, Graham
Brazier, Julian
Breed, Colin
Brooke, Mrs Annette L
Browning, Mrs Angela
Bruce, Malcolm
Burns, Simon
Burnside, David
Butterfill, John
Cable, Dr Vincent
Calton, Mrs Patsy
Carmichael, Alistair
Cash, William
Chapman, Sir Sydney
(Chipping Barnet)
Chidgey, David
Chope, Christopher
Clappison, James
Collins, Tim
Conway, Derek
Cormack, Sir Patrick
Cotter, Brian
Cran, James
Curry, Rt Hon David
Davey, Edward (Kingston)
Davies, Quentin (Grantham)
Davis, Rt Hon David (Haltemprice)
Djanogly, Jonathan
Dodds, Nigel
Donaldson, Jeffrey M
Dorrell, Rt Hon Stephen
Doughty, Sue
Duncan, Alan (Rutland & Melton)
Duncan, Peter (Galloway)
Duncan Smith, Rt Hon Iain
Evans, Nigel
Ewing, Annabelle
Fabricant, Michael
Fallon, Michael
Field, Mark (Cities of London)
Flight, Howard
Flook, Adrian
Forth, Rt Hon Eric
Fox, Dr Liam
Francois, Mark
Gibb, Nick
Goodman, Paul
Gray, James
Grayling, Chris
Green, Damian (Ashford)
Green, Matthew (Ludlow)
Grieve, Dominic
Gummer, Rt Hon John
Hague, Rt Hon William
Hammond, Philip
Harris, Dr Evan (Oxford W)
Hawkins, Nick
Hayes, John
Heald, Oliver
Heath, David
Heathcoat–Amory, Rt Hon David
Hermon, Lady
Hoban, Mark
Hogg, Rt Hon Douglas
Holmes, Paul
Horam, John
Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Howarth, Gerald (Aldershot)
Hughes, Simon (Southwark N)
Hunter, Andrew
Jack, Rt Hon Michael
Jackson, Robert (Wantage)
Keetch, Paul
Key, Robert
Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Knight, Rt Hon Greg (E Yorkshire)
Laing, Mrs Eleanor
Lait, Mrs Jacqui
Lamb, Norman
Lansley, Andrew
Laws, David
Leigh, Edward
Letwin, Oliver
Lewis, Dr Julian (New Forest E)
Liddell–Grainger, Ian
Lidington, David
Llwyd, Elfyn
Loughton, Tim
Luff, Peter
McIntosh, Miss Anne
MacKay, Rt Hon Andrew
Maclean, Rt Hon David
McLoughlin, Patrick
Maples, John
Marsden, Paul (Shrewsbury)
Mates, Michael
Maude, Rt Hon Francis
Mawhinney, Rt Hon Sir Brian
May, Mrs Theresa
Mitchell, Andrew (Sutton Coldfield)
Moore, Michael
Moss, Malcolm
Murrison, Dr Andrew
Norman, Archie
Oaten, Mark
O'Brien, Stephen (Eddisbury)
Öpik, Lembit
Osborne, George (Tatton)
Ottaway, Richard
Page, Richard
Paterson, Owen
Pickles, Eric
Price, Adam
Prisk, Mark
Pugh, Dr John
Randall, John
Redwood, Rt Hon John
Reid, Alan (Argyll & Bute)
Rendel, David
Robathan, Andrew
Robertson, Angus (Moray)
Robertson, Hugh (Faversham)
Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry)
Robinson, Mrs Iris (Strangford)
Robinson, Peter (Belfast E)
Rosindell, Andrew
Ruffley, David
Russell, Bob (Colchester)
Salmond, Alex
Sanders, Adrian
Shephard, Rt Hon Mrs Gillian
Simmonds, Mark
Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns)
Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S)
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spink, Bob
Spring, Richard
Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John
Steen, Anthony
Streeter, Gary
Stunell, Andrew
Swire, Hugo
Syms, Robert
Tapsell, Sir Peter
Taylor, John (Solihull)
Taylor, Matthew (Truro)
Taylor, Sir Teddy
Thomas, Simon (Ceredigion)
Thurso, John
Trend, Michael
Turner, Andrew (Isle of Wight)
Tyrie, Andrew
Walter, Robert
Waterson, Nigel
Watkinson, Angela
Weir, Michael
Whittingdale, John
Widdecombe, Rt Hon Miss Ann
Wiggin, Bill
Wilkinson, John
Willetts, David
Williams, Hywel (Caernarfon)
Willis, Phil
Wilshire, David
Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Wishart, Pete
Young, Rt Hon Sir George
Younger–Ross, Richard

Tellers for the Noes:

Mrs. Cheryl Gillan and
Mr. Desmond Swayne.

Question accordingly agreed to.

8 May 2002 : Column 227

Clause 28 ordered to stand part of the Bill.

8 May 2002 : Column 228

Next Section

IndexHome Page