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Written Question
Non-domestic Rates: Tax Allowances
4 Feb 2021

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to extend business rates relief for non-essential businesses beyond the 2020-21 tax year.

Answered by Jesse Norman

This year the Government has provided an unprecedented business rates holiday for eligible retail, hospitality and leisure properties, and nurseries, due to the direct adverse effects of COVID-19, worth about £10 billion.

At the 2020 Spending Review, the Government committed further support to all businesses by freezing the business rates multiplier for 2021-22.

The Government is considering options for reliefs for 2021-22. As announced in a Written Ministerial Statement on 3 February, the Government will outline the next round of COVID-19 support measures at Budget.


Written Question
Taxation: Self-assessment
29 Jun 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department has plans to extend the deadline of 31 October 2020 for Self Assessment paper tax returns for older people in residential care who are unable to access HMRC services online or complete paperwork without support from family members, which is unavailable as a result of covid-19 social distancing measures.

Answered by Jesse Norman

HMRC have no plans currently to extend the deadline of 31 October 2020 for Self-Assessment paper returns for older people in residential care. However, HMRC will take a sympathetic view where the impact of COVID-19 on a person’s personal circumstances has caused them to miss the filing deadline.


Written Question
Schools: Finance
24 Mar 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Education on school funding.

Answered by Steve Barclay

I regularly discuss school funding with the Secretary of State for Education. At the Spending Round, the government committed to a £7.1 billion cash increase in funding for schools in England by 2022-23. This funding settlement reflects the government’s commitment to high quality education for all school children.


Written Question
Environment Protection: Taxation
9 Mar 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will make it his policy to maintain the carbon price in the next 12 months; and what assessment he has made of the effect of carbon pricing on the decarbonisation of the UK economy.

Answered by Steve Barclay

The Government is committed to carbon pricing as a decarbonisation tool following the transition period. In line with the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK will remain in the EU Emissions Trading System until 31 December 2020.

Alongside the EU ETS, the UK also applies the Carbon Price Support rate. Together, these have helped to reduce the importance of coal in the UK’s energy generation mix: electricity generation from coal usage has fallen from 40% in 2012 to 5% in 2018. Further detail on carbon pricing will be set out at the Budget.

Additionally, in November 2019, HM Treasury published Terms of Reference for its review into how the transition to a net zero economy will be funded, and where the costs will fall. The review will ensure contributions are fair between households, businesses and the taxpayer, and will allow us to maximise economic growth opportunities from the transition. The review will publish its findings in Autumn 2020.


Written Question
Beer: Excise Duties
28 Jan 2020

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to differentiate the rate of duty on beer between supermarkets and pubs after the UK has left the EU.

Answered by Simon Clarke

Fiscal changes to alcohol, and tax rates are kept under review, and further announcements to duty changes will be made in due course.

To date, since 2010, government has scrapped the beer duty escalator, making the price of a typical pint 14p cheaper than it otherwise would have been. Pubs are also able to benefit from wider reforms including the Pubs Code and reductions to business rates.


Written Question
Carbon Emissions
4 Nov 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what fiscal steps his Department is taking to support the UK's transition to a low-carbon economy; and what his policy is on the future of carbon pricing in the UK.

Answered by Simon Clarke

The UK is the G20 leader in reducing the carbon intensity of its economy, and is using a range of policy levers – including spending and taxes – to support the UK’s transition to a low-carbon economy.

The Clean Growth Strategy set out significant investment by the Government in decarbonisation including £2.5 billion to support low carbon innovation from 2015-2021, £4.5bn to support development of renewable and low carbon heating through the Renewable Heat Incentive and £1 billion to support the uptake of ultra-low emissions vehicles. In addition, government has supported the deployment of renewable electricity projects, with annual consumer support now reaching over £10bn.

HMT has accepted the Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) recommendation to conduct a review into the costs and benefits of transitioning to a net zero economy. The Review will consider how to achieve this transition in a way that works for households, businesses and public finances.

Carbon pricing has helped to drive down UK emissions, in particular from the power sector, and will continue to play an important role to help meet the UK’s legally binding carbon reduction commitments, which are unaffected by leaving the EU.

The government is considering long-term options for carbon pricing including the possibility of linking a UK greenhouse gas emissions trading system with the EU ETS. As announced at Budget 2018, in the event the UK leaves the EU without a deal, the Carbon Emissions Tax would be introduced.


Written Question
Tax Avoidance and Tax Evasion
1 Oct 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent steps his Department has taken to reduce tax (a) avoidance and (b) evasion.

Answered by Jesse Norman

This government has taken significant action, including introducing 100 new measures tackling tax avoidance, evasion and other forms of non-compliance, since 2010, securing and protecting £200bn that would have otherwise gone unpaid and helping to bring the UK’s tax gap to a near record low of 5.6%.
Written Question
Electricity Generation: Private Sector
1 Jul 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent assessment he has made of the merits of private sector ownership of electricity networks.

Answered by Robert Jenrick

The Government is fully committed to a model of private ownership with strong independent economic regulation and ensuring this model delivers for consumers. The Government has not conducted a recent assessment of the merits of private sector ownership of electricity networks; nor an assessment of the potential effect of the re-nationalisation of electricity networks on the level of personal pensions.


Written Question
Electricity Generation: Nationalisation
1 Jul 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the re-nationalisation of electricity networks on the level of personal pensions.

Answered by Robert Jenrick

The Government is fully committed to a model of private ownership with strong independent economic regulation and ensuring this model delivers for consumers. The Government has not conducted a recent assessment of the merits of private sector ownership of electricity networks; nor an assessment of the potential effect of the re-nationalisation of electricity networks on the level of personal pensions.


Written Question
Film: Finance
19 Mar 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme in helping domestic film production companies raise funding.

Answered by Mel Stride

The Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme was introduced in 2012 to support investment in very early-stage companies, which often struggle to access growth capital.

As a non-sectoral scheme, no assessment has been made of the application of the SEIS to specific industries or sectors. Since its introduction, the scheme has helped over 8,000 companies from a range of industries to raise around £800 million in investment.

The government recognises the importance of the film industry to the UK economy, which is why it offers specific support for the production of culturally British films. Last year alone the film tax relief provided support worth £469 million, in addition to nearly £70 million in direct funding.


Written Question
Social Services: Children
13 Mar 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to paragraph 5.16 of Budget 2018, what proportion of the £410 million for adult and children's social care will be allocated to children’s social care.

Answered by Elizabeth Truss

Autumn Budget 2018 provided a further £410 million in 2019-20 for adults and children’s social care. Where necessary, local councils should use this funding to ensure that adult social care pressures do not create additional demand on the NHS. Local councils can also use it to improve their social care offer for older people, people with disabilities and children.


Written Question
Film: Finance
27 Feb 2019

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans his Department has to support domestic film production companies to raise funding.

Answered by Mel Stride

The UK film industry is a great success story, contributing an estimated £4 billion a year to the economy and supporting nearly 70,000 jobs. Last year the government provided £469 million worth of support through the film tax relief and almost £70 million in grant in aid and national lottery funding through the British Film Institute.

The film tax relief supports the production of culturally British films. 2,420 films have benefitted from the film tax relief since it was introduced in 2007.

The British Film Institute supports UK film production companies through the BFI Film Fund, investing in the production of films from adventurous storytellers, the BFI Locked Box initiative, enabling production companies to benefit from the success of their films, and the BFI Vision Awards, supporting new film producers to build their companies.


Written Question
Infrastructure: Clacton
12 Nov 2018

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what recent steps he has taking to invest in infrastructure in the Clacton region.

Answered by Robert Jenrick

We are committed to making sure every area of the country has modern and efficient infrastructure. By the end of the parliament, public capital investment will reach levels not sustained in 40 years.

Essex will receive £19 million for local roads maintenance in 2018/19, and DfT has provided £4 million to Essex County Council for development funding for improvements to the A120. In the last 5 years access to Superfast Broadband in Clacton has risen from 77% to 98%.

The Budget announced new programmes delivered at the local level to address barriers to productivity and increased funding for existing programmes, including an additional £420 million in 2018/19 to tackle potholes, repair damaged roads, and invest in keeping bridges open and safe. The £675 million Future High Streets Fund will support and fund local areas’ plans to make their high streets and town centres fit for the future, and the Budget also announced £150 million funding pot for a new competition for small improvements projects such as roundabouts.


Written Question
Child Tax Credits: Apprentices
16 May 2018

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department plans to make low income families eligible for child tax credits if their child undertakes an apprenticeship.

Answered by Elizabeth Truss

Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit support parents with the extra costs of raising a child. Both are payable for children until 31st August following their 16th birthday. After this, the young person must satisfy additional conditions: they must remain in full-time, non-advanced education up to and including A-level/GNVQ level 3, or equivalent, or they must be undertaking a course of approved training. If a young person is undertaking a paid apprenticeship, or they are in training or education by virtue of a contract of employment, the family is no longer eligible.


Written Question
Child Benefit: Apprentices
16 May 2018

Questioner: Giles Watling (CON - Clacton)

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether his Department plans to allow low income families to continue claiming child benefit if their child undertakes an apprenticeship.

Answered by Elizabeth Truss

Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit support parents with the extra costs of raising a child. Both are payable for children until 31st August following their 16th birthday. After this, the young person must satisfy additional conditions: they must remain in full-time, non-advanced education up to and including A-level/GNVQ level 3, or equivalent, or they must be undertaking a course of approved training. If a young person is undertaking a paid apprenticeship, or they are in training or education by virtue of a contract of employment, the family is no longer eligible.