Pauline Latham – 2016 Parliamentary Question to the HM Treasury

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Pauline Latham on 2016-01-14.

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will assess the potential merits of reducing the rate of VAT on sunscreen, sun block and other sun safety products.

Mr David Gauke

EU VAT law does not specifically provide for a reduced rate for sunscreen, although there is a provision for a reduced rate of VAT for “pharmaceutical products of a kind normally used for health care, prevention of diseases and treatment for medical and veterinary purposes”.

Not all sunscreen products are recognised as having a health benefit and the factor level necessary for adequate protection is a matter of contention.

However, high-factor sunscreen is on the NHS prescription list for certain conditions and provided VAT free when dispensed by a pharmacist to patients.