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Mr. Salmond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the various rates of taxation for gas pipelines within the United Kingdom and on the rationale for the differences. 
Dawn Primarolo: Since the special taxation regime for UK oil and gas was introduced in the 1970s, oil and gas pipelines associated with particular fields have received the same tax treatment as the fields themselves. This reflects the fact that the pipelines are an integral part of the overall development of the fields concerned. Because the tax regime that applies to a field, and therefore its associated pipelines, depends on the date on which the filed was given development consent, pipelines associated with different fields can have different tax treatments.
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Mr. Salmond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much revenue the Treasury has received from tax on gas pipeline tariffs in each year since 199798; and how much revenue the Treasury predicts it will receive from tax on gas pipeline tariffs in 200203. 
Dawn Primarolo: Companies pay corporation tax on their overall profits, including those from the tariffing of oil and gas pipelines. From the data available reliable estimates of the tax attributable to gas pipeline tariffs cannot be made.
Dawn Primarolo: Oil was first discovered in the Buzzard field in June 2001. Data for the Buzzard field were included in the forecasts of North sea revenues for both the 2001 pre-Budget report and the 2002 Financial Statement and Budget Report.
The Government have therefore decided that the simpler approach of a supplementary charge buttressed by specific and generous investment incentives is the right one, and that to ensure certainty for the industry going forward it was right to announce this as a firm decision in the Budget.
Dawn Primarolo: Before the changes announced in the Budget, companies were already entitled to 100 per cent. first year relief for exploration and appraisal drilling. In future, companies will also have 100 per cent. first year allowances for the capital expenditure on subsequent development of discovered oil and gas fields. This will increase the overall post-tax rate of return on exploration and appraisal.
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Dawn Primarolo: Ministers and civil servants have meetings with a wide range of organisations and individuals as part of the process of policy development and analysis. As with previous Administrations it is not this Government's practice to provide details of all such meetings. All such contacts are conducted in accordance with the Ministerial Code, the Civil Service Code and Guidance for Civil Servants: Contacts with Lobbyists.
Mr. Blizzard: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to his answer of 21 May 2002, Official Report, column 28W, on oil and gas industry (taxation), if he will publish data that have been agreed by the industry as not commercially sensitive. 
Dawn Primarolo: The Economic Secretary to the Treasury explained in full the methodology the Government used on 9 May 2002, Official Report, columns 36263. The analysis was based on commercially sensitive information.
Mr. Boateng: All new cars purchased on or after 1 March 2001 are subject to the graduated system of vehicle excise duty (VED). Under this system, the amount of VED payable is related to carbon emissions, the lower the emission rate the lower the VED payable therefore providing an incentive to motorists to purchase cleaner, less polluting cars.
Mr. Bill O'Brien: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what vehicle excise duty concessions are allowed to owners of cars with a cc rating of less than 1549; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Boateng: Cars registered before 1 March 2001 with engines of 1549 cc or less qualify for the reduced rate of vehicle excise duty which currently stands at £105 per year, £55 less than the standard rate. Cars first registered after 1 March 2001 are liable for VED on the basis of their carbon dioxide emissions, and many of those with engines up to 1549 cc will qualify for the lower bands of VED.
Matthew Taylor: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, pursuant to his answer of 30 April 2002, Official Report, column 732W, on excise duties, what the level was of receipts associated with forestalling of road fuel duties in April 2002; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Boateng: As stated in paragraph C50 of the Financial Statement and Budget Report, it is estimated that around £0.2 billion in receipts was associated with the forestalling of road fuel duties. However, there is no direct way of measuring forestalling.
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Mr. Boateng: As with all taxes, the effect of the levy will be continually monitored as part of the Budget process. Its effect on recycled aggregates will be evaluated in due course as data become available.
Mr. Salmond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many full time staff members at HM Customs and Excise have responsibility for ensuring that questions from quarry operators regarding the provisions of the aggregates levy are answered. 
John Healey: Customs has the equivalent of around 230 full-time staff nationally dealing with written and telephone inquiries about all Customs and Excise taxes, including the aggregates levy. In addition, there are about 30 environmental taxes assurance staff, who will deal with questions raised on aggregates levy visits. Complex questions may be referred to six specialist aggregates levy support staff.
Annabelle Ewing: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans he has to transfer the administration of reserved powers and functions of the Treasury, its executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies within its remit from the Treasury to the Scotland Office. 
Annabelle Ewing: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many representations the Scottish Executive has made to his Department since May 1999 broken down by (a) Scottish Executive Department, (b) subject and (c) date; 
Mr. Boateng: Information is not available in the form requested. Both formal and informal contacts take place regularly between Government Departments, including the Treasury, and Departments of the Scottish Executive.
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