2 thoughts on “The PR nightmare of the ‘tampon tax’”

  1. Posted 30/08/2018 at 09:32 | Permalink

    I am not really sure why there is support amongst free-marketeers for taxes levied at differential rates on different products. Generally, the iea position has been lower, non-discriminatory taxes with no exemptions and where there is poverty for that to be dealt with by cash transfers.

  2. Posted 30/08/2018 at 09:57 | Permalink

    With respect, VAT on tampons is hardly a significant contribution to poverty. If it was abolished it would save the average menstruating woman in the UK less than £7.50 a year.
    A couple of points:
    1. Whatever the merits of this particular case, tax economists would generally argue that with a tax of this kind it is best to have as few exemptions as possible in order to minimise distortions in spending patterns and reduce bureaucratic complexity.
    2. The author seems to have bought into the ‘period poverty’ story. This. like ‘fuel poverty’ ‘food poverty’ and so on is a poor guide to policy. If people are poor we should aim to boost their income and allow them to spend it as they wish, rather than subsidising particular products or providing them for ‘free’, as various pressure groups argue. I blogged on this a few weeks ago:

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