HOUSE OF COMMONS
Standing Committee C
LICENSING (RETAIL SALES) BILL
Wednesday 16 March 1988
CLAUSES 1 to 4 agreed to, one with amendment
BILL to be reported.
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[MR. PATRICK CORMACKin the Chair]
Amendment proposed [9 March], No. 1, in page 1, line 15, at the end to add the words— (e) by a wholesaler from his permanent establishment. (2) In this Clause— "Permanent Establishment" shall mean premises owned by the wholesaler or occupied by him under a lease to which the provisions of Part 2 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 apply. "Wholesale" has the same meaning as in section 4 of the Alcoholic Liquor Duties Act 1979; "Wholesaler" means a person who deals wholesale in dutiable alcoholic liquor."—(Mr. Forth.)
Question again proposed, That the amendment be made.
Mr. Eric Forth (Mid-Worcestershire): On a point of order, Mr. Cormack. May I beg to ask leave to withdraw the amendment and move amendment No. 18 formally?
The Chairman: We are most grateful to the hon. Gentleman for his point of order, but we must go one step at a time. I have selected amendment No. 18 as a result of the slight problems that arose last week.
Amendment, by leave withdrawn.
Mr. Forth: I beg to move amendment No. 18, in page 1, line 15, at end insert— "(e) of not less than the following quantities— (i) in the case of spirits, wine or made-wine, 9 litres or 1 case; or (ii) in the case of beer or cider, 20 litres or 2 cases. and is made from premises owned by the vendor, or occupied by him under a lease to which the provisions of Part 2 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954 apply. (2) In paragraph (e) above the expressions "beer", "case", "cider", "spirits", "wine" and "made-wine" have the same meaning as in the Alcoholic Liquor Duties Act 1979.". I believe and hope that the amendment in this form will be acceptable to the Committee and have the approval of my hon. Friend the promoter of the Bill, the Member for Berkshire, East (Mr. MacKay) 76 and the Minister. I believe that the wording which has now been arrived at meets the objection which my hon. Friend the Minister raised last week and fulfils the aim of the amendment which I outlined. I do not need to repeat the argument for the amendment, but I commend it in its present form to the Committee.
Mr. Andrew MacKay (Berkshire, East): I am quite happy with the amendment and it has my blessing. There were some technical drafting difficulties with amendment No. 1, which is why I proposed the adjournment of the Committee last Wednesday. I gather from my hon. Friend the Member for Mid-Worcestershire (Mr. Forth) and from my hon. Friend the Minister and others that the new amendment meets all the concerns and has not changed the thrust of the amendment, which we so strongly supported. It has also ensured that there are no unfortunate side effects.
Mr.Dafydd Wigley (Caernarfon): I have not previously seen the amendment, so I come cold into it, but it appears to me that we have gone over to a definition that relates purely to quantities. In our debate last week, or possibly the week before, some problems of using quantities for the purposes of the Bill were revealed. I was under the impression at that stage that the hon. Member for Berkshire, East (Mr. MacKay) did not want to build in conditions in terms of quantities because of the complications. How is it that we have now overcome any difficulties which may arise when defining these matters in terms of cases and litres?
Mr. MacKay: If the hon. Gentleman referred to column 66 of the Official Report of our proceedings on 9 March, he would see that the Minister responded fully to that. I am satisfied that there will be no undue problems. As I said earlier, I support the amendment.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department (Mr. Douglas Hogg):Amendment No. 18 is in proper form to exempt from the Licensing Act those transactions which are properly described as wholesale transactions. Consequently, if the Committee agrees to the principle which we discussed last week and wishes to exempt genuine wholesale transactions, the amendment is an appropriate way of achieving that objective.
Amendment agreed to.
Clause 1, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Clauses 2, 3 and 4 ordered to stand part of the Bill.
Bill, as amended, to be reported.
Committee rose at twenty four minutes to Eleven o'clock.
THE FOLLOWING MEMBERS ATTENDED THE COMMITTEE:
Cormack, Mr. Patrick (Chairman)
Hogg, Mr. Douglas
MacKay, Mr. Andrew