Ritchie welcomes u-turn on caravan VAT

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Thursday, May 31st, 2012
SDLP South Down MP Margaret Ritchie has welcomed the Coalition’s partial u-turn on VAT being levied on static caravans, reducing the amount payable from 20% to 5%, but says that they should not be subject to any VAT at all. Speaking to Newry Times, Ms Ritchie said: “I am glad to see that the Coalition has heeded the message from the public, the pressure groups and also from those MPs who signed up to the Early Day Motions on this topic which I tabled, along with Stuart Graham MP. As government u-turns go, this is one which will benefit a large number of people.” “However, George Osborne needs to go one step further still and abandon the VAT charge on static caravans altogether. Static caravans and their related industries make an enormous contribution to the economy. Three million people took trips in owned caravans in 2010, contributing £334m to the economy in a bad recession year.” She added, “The caravan industry has already been hit badly by the prevailing economic climate – any further taxation, however small, could exacerbate this. “Therefore, while I strongly welcome today’s u-turn, more work is needed and I will be fighting hard for this highly valuable industry and on behalf of those who avail themselves of it.”
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