Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Brown Plans Boost to Duty-Free Limits; SHOPPERS' TAX ALLOWANCE WILL BE RAISED TO [Pounds Sterling]1,000 IN BUDGET

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Brown Plans Boost to Duty-Free Limits; SHOPPERS' TAX ALLOWANCE WILL BE RAISED TO [Pounds Sterling]1,000 IN BUDGET

Article excerpt

Byline: JOE MURPHY

GORDON BROWN will use tomorrow's Budget to propose a sevenfold increase in duty-free limits for transatlantic shoppers.

The Chancellor will say the allowance should jump from the current [pounds sterling]145 level to about [pounds sterling]1,000.

It would mean anyone travelling on business or holiday to places outside the EU could avoid VAT and duty charges on purchases such as clothing, jewellery or electrical items.

Tens of thousands of shoppers already take advantage of the strong pound to shop abroad, and the boost could mean cheap flights pay for themselves. But this cannot go ahead without agreement from the EU as the current limit is set in European law.

Footballer Wayne Rooney's fiancee Coleen McLoughlin was among travellers stung for unpaid duty last year. She was charged [pounds sterling]3,000 at Manchester airport after a [pounds sterling]15,000 New York shopping spree.

The duty-free threshold has not risen since 1994. …

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