Tampon tax
MPs have voted to reject the motion to eliminate the 'tampon tax' by 305 to 287 Getty

MPs have voted against a proposal to abolish the so called "tampon tax" which means women pay a 5% VAT levy on sanitary products classified as "non-essential luxury items" by the EU.

However, despite MPs voting 305 to 287 against the motion to scrap the tax, a cross-party support headed by Labour has meant Treasury minister David Gauke has promised to raise the issue with the European Commission.

Currently, tampons are subjected to EU tax for not being considered essential, meaning women are charged a government fee to purchase them as well as the costs incurred by retailers. As of 2000, the VAT on tampons and sanitary towels fell from 17.5% to 5% following a campaign by Labour MP Dawn Primarolo.

Tampon Tax: How VAT is paid on sanitary products in other countries

The 5% tax on sanitary products is the lowest rate possible under EU VAT law according to HM Revenue and Customs is currently enforced by the EU.

Following the vote, Gauke said: "There is very considerable cross-party support for the UK to abolish VAT on sanitary products. To that end, I will raise this issue with the EC and other member states setting out our views – that it should be possible for member states to apply a zero rate to sanitary products.

The vote comes after an online petition labelled: "Stop taxing periods. Period" called on government to back the campaign attracted more than 250,000 signatures.

Laura Coryton, who started the change.org petition, said: "Periods are no luxury. You can 'opt-in' to extravagance. You cannot choose to menstruate. Despite this, a whole heap of disadvantages have been created for those who do. Not using sanitary products can lead to health risks, jeopardise maintaining a normal, professional or personal life, and result in public ridicule. Equally, by using sanitary products, our Government capitalises on misogynist discourse and period shame that has caused us to fear our own menstrual cycles."

Below is the full list on Conservative MPs, and two UUPs, who voted against compelling the government to cut the tampon tax:

Mp Name Constituency  Vote 
Nigel Adams Selby and Ainsty Con
Adam Afriyie Windsor Con
Peter Aldous Waveney Con
Lucy Allan Telford Con
Heidi Allen South Cambridgeshire Con
David Amess Southend West Con
Stuart Andrew Pudsey Con
Caroline Ansell Eastbourne Con
Edward Argar Charnwood Con
Victoria Atkins Louth and Horncastle Con
Richard Bacon South Norfolk Con
Steven Baker Wycombe Con
Harriett Baldwin West Worcestershire Con
Stephen Barclay North East Cambridgeshire Con
Gavin Barwell Croydon Central Con
Guto Bebb Aberconwy Con
Henry Bellingham North West Norfolk Con
Richard Benyon Newbury Con
Paul Beresford Mole Valley Con
Jake Berry Rossendale and Darwen Con
James Berry Kingston and Surbiton Con
Andrew Bingham High Peak Con
Bob Blackman Harrow East Con
Nicola Blackwood Oxford West and Abingdon Con
Nicholas Boles Grantham and Stamford Con
Peter Bone Wellingborough Con
Victoria Borwick Kensington Con
Karen Bradley Staffordshire Moorlands Con
Graham Brady Altrincham and Sale West Con
Julian Brazier Canterbury Con
Andrew Bridgen North West Leicestershire Con
Steve Brine Winchester Con
James Brokenshire Old Bexley and Sidcup Con
Fiona Bruce Congleton Con
Robert Buckland South Swindon Con
Simon Burns Chelmsford Con
David Burrowes Enfield, Southgate Con
Alistair Burt North East Bedfordshire Con
Alun Cairns Vale of Glamorgan Con
Neil Carmichael Stroud Con
James Cartlidge South Suffolk Con
Maria Caulfield Lewes Con
Alex Chalk Cheltenham Con
Rehman Chishti Gillingham and Rainham Con
Christopher Chope Christchurch Con
Jo Churchill Bury St Edmunds Con
Greg Clark Tunbridge Wells Con
Kenneth Clarke Rushcliffe Con
James Cleverly Braintree Con
Geoffrey Clifton-Brown The Cotswolds Con
Therese Coffey Suffolk Coastal Con
Damian Collins Folkestone and Hythe Con
Oliver Colvile Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport Con
Alberto Costa South Leicestershire Con
Geoffrey Cox Torridge and West Devon Con
Stephen Crabb Preseli Pembrokeshire Con
Tracey Crouch Chatham and Aylesford Con
Byron Davies Gower Con
Chris Davies Brecon and Radnorshire Con
David Davies Monmouth Con
Glyn Davies Montgomeryshire Con
James Davies Vale of Clwyd Con
Mims Davies Eastleigh Con
David Davis Haltemprice and Howden Con
Caroline Dinenage Gosport Con
Jonathan Djanogly Huntingdon Con
Michelle Donelan Chippenham Con
Steve Double St Austell and Newquay Con
Oliver Dowden Hertsmere Con
Jackie Doyle-Price Thurrock Con
Richard Drax South Dorset Con
Flick Drummond Portsmouth South Con
James Duddridge Rochford and Southend East Con
Alan Duncan Rutland and Melton Con
Iain Duncan Smith Chingford and Woodford Green Con
Philip Dunne Ludlow Con
Tom Elliott Fermanagh and South Tyrone UUP
Michael Ellis Northampton North Con
Jane Ellison Battersea Con
Tobias Ellwood Bournemouth East Con
Charlie Elphicke Dover Con
George Eustice Camborne and Redruth Con
Graham Evans Weaver Vale Con
Nigel Evans Ribble Valley Con
David Evennett Bexleyheath and Crayford Con
Michael Fabricant Lichfield Con
Michael Fallon Sevenoaks Con
Mark Field Cities of London and Westminster Con
Kevin Foster Torbay Con
Liam Fox North Somerset Con
Lucy Frazer South East Cambridgeshire Con
George Freeman Mid Norfolk Con
Mike Freer Finchley and Golders Green Con
Richard Fuller Bedford Con
Marcus Fysh Yeovil Con
Edward Garnier Harborough Con
Mark Garnier Wyre Forest Con
David Gauke South West Hertfordshire Con
Nusrat Ghani Wealden Con
Nick Gibb Bognor Regis and Littlehampton Con
Cheryl Gillan Chesham and Amersham Con
John Glen Salisbury Con
Zac Goldsmith Richmond Park Con
Robert Goodwill Scarborough and Whitby Con
Michael Gove Surrey Heath Con
Richard Graham Gloucester Con
Helen Grant Maidstone and The Weald Con
James Gray North Wiltshire Con
Chris Grayling Epsom and Ewell Con
Chris Green Bolton West Con
Damian Green Ashford Con
Dominic Grieve Beaconsfield Con
Andrew Griffiths Burton Con
Ben Gummer Ipswich Con
Sam Gyimah East Surrey Con
Robert Halfon Harlow Con
Luke Hall Thornbury and Yate Con
Philip Hammond Runnymede and Weybridge Con
Stephen Hammond Wimbledon Con
Matthew Hancock West Suffolk Con
Greg Hands Chelsea and Fulham Con
Mark Harper Forest of Dean Con
Richard Harrington Watford Con
Rebecca Harris Castle Point Con
Simon Hart Carmarthen West and South Pembrokeshire Con
Alan Haselhurst Saffron Walden Con
John Hayes South Holland and The Deepings Con
Oliver Heald North East Hertfordshire Con
James Heappey Wells Con
Chris Heaton-Harris Daventry Con
Peter Heaton-Jones North Devon Con
Gordon Henderson Sittingbourne and Sheppey Con
Nick Herbert Arundel and South Downs Con
Damian Hinds East Hampshire Con
Simon Hoare North Dorset Con
George Hollingbery Meon Valley Con
Kevin Hollinrake Thirsk and Malton Con
Kris Hopkins Keighley Con
Gerald Howarth Aldershot Con
John Howell Henley Con
Ben Howlett Bath Con
Nigel Huddleston Mid Worcestershire Con
Jeremy Hunt South West Surrey Con
Nick Hurd Ruislip, Northwood and Pinner Con
Stewart Jackson Peterborough Con
Margot James Stourbridge Con
Sajid Javid Bromsgrove Con
Ranil Jayawardena North East Hampshire Con
Andrea Jenkyns Morley and Outwood Con
Robert Jenrick Newark Con
Boris Johnson Uxbridge and South Ruislip Con
Gareth Johnson Dartford Con
Jo Johnson Orpington Con
Andrew Jones Harrogate and Knaresborough Con
David Jones Clwyd West Con
Marcus Jones Nuneaton Con
Daniel Kawczynski Shrewsbury and Atcham Con
Seema Kennedy South Ribble Con
Danny Kinahan South Antrim UUP
Simon Kirby Brighton, Kemptown Con
Greg Knight East Yorkshire Con
Julian Knight Solihull Con
Kwasi Kwarteng Spelthorne Con
Mark Lancaster Milton Keynes North Con
Pauline Latham Mid Derbyshire Con
Andrea Leadsom South Northamptonshire Con
Phillip Lee Bracknell Con
Jeremy Lefroy Stafford Con
Edward Leigh Gainsborough Con
Charlotte Leslie Bristol North West Con
Oliver Letwin West Dorset Con
Brandon Lewis Great Yarmouth Con
Julian Lewis New Forest East Con
Ian Liddell-Grainger Bridgwater and West Somerset Con
David Lidington Aylesbury Con
Jack Lopresti Filton and Bradley Stoke Con
Jonathan Lord Woking Con
Tim Loughton East Worthing and Shoreham Con
Karen Lumley Redditch Con
Craig Mackinlay South Thanet Con
David Mackintosh Northampton South Con
Anne Main St Albans Con
Alan Mak Havant Con
Kit Malthouse North West Hampshire Con
Scott Mann North Cornwall Con
Tania Mathias Twickenham Con
Theresa May Maidenhead Con
Paul Maynard Blackpool North and Cleveleys Con
Jason McCartney Colne Valley Con
Karl McCartney Lincoln Con
Stephen McPartland Stevenage Con
Mark Menzies Fylde Con
Johnny Mercer Plymouth, Moor View Con
Huw Merriman Bexhill and Battle Con
Stephen Metcalfe South Basildon and East Thurrock Con
Maria Miller Basingstoke Con
Amanda Milling Cannock Chase Con
Nigel Mills Amber Valley Con
Anne Milton Guildford Con
Andrew Mitchell Sutton Coldfield Con
Penny Mordaunt Portsmouth North Con
Nicky Morgan Loughborough Con
Anne Marie Morris Newton Abbot Con
David Morris Morecambe and Lunesdale Con
James Morris Halesowen and Rowley Regis Con
Wendy Morton Aldridge-Brownhills Con
David Mowat Warrington South Con
David Mundell Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale Con
Sheryll Murray South East Cornwall Con
Andrew Murrison South West Wiltshire Con
Bob Neill Bromley and Chislehurst Con
Sarah Newton Truro and Falmouth Con
Caroline Nokes Romsey and Southampton North Con
Jesse Norman Hereford and South Herefordshire Con
Matthew Offord Hendon Con
Guy Opperman Hexham Con
George Osborne Tatton Con
Neil Parish Tiverton and Honiton Con
Priti Patel Witham Con
Owen Paterson North Shropshire Con
Mark Pawsey Rugby Con
Mike Penning Hemel Hempstead Con
John Penrose Weston-Super-Mare Con
Andrew Percy Brigg and Goole Con
Claire Perry Devizes Con
Stephen Phillips Sleaford and North Hykeham Con
Chris Philp Croydon South Con
Eric Pickles Brentwood and Ongar Con
Christopher Pincher Tamworth Con
Daniel Poulter Central Suffolk and North Ipswich Con
Rebecca Pow Taunton Deane Con
Victoria Prentis Banbury Con
Mark Prisk Hertford and Stortford Con
Mark Pritchard The Wrekin Con
Tom Pursglove Corby Con
Jeremy Quin Horsham Con
Will Quince Colchester Con
Dominic Raab Esher and Walton Con
Jacob Rees-Mogg North East Somerset Con
Laurence Robertson Tewkesbury Con
Mary Robinson Cheadle Con
Andrew Rosindell Romford Con
Amber Rudd Hastings and Rye Con
David Rutley Macclesfield Con
Antoinette Sandbach Eddisbury Con
Paul Scully Sutton and Cheam Con
Andrew Selous South West Bedfordshire Con
Alok Sharma Reading West Con
Alec Shelbrooke Elmet and Rothwell Con
Keith Simpson Broadland Con
Chris Skidmore Kingswood Con
Chloe Smith Norwich North Con
Henry Smith Crawley Con
Julian Smith Skipton and Ripon Con
Royston Smith Southampton, Itchen Con
Amanda Solloway Derby North Con
Anna Soubry Broxtowe Con
Caroline Spelman Meriden Con
Mark Spencer Sherwood Con
Andrew Stephenson Pendle Con
John Stevenson Carlisle Con
Bob Stewart Beckenham Con
Iain Stewart Milton Keynes South Con
Gary Streeter South West Devon Con
Mel Stride Central Devon Con
Graham Stuart Beverley and Holderness Con
Julian Sturdy York Outer Con
Rishi Sunak Richmond (Yorks) Con
Desmond Swayne New Forest West Con
Hugo Swire East Devon Con
Robert Syms Poole Con
Derek Thomas St Ives Con
Maggie Throup Erewash Con
Edward Timpson Crewe and Nantwich Con
Kelly Tolhurst Rochester and Strood Con
Justin Tomlinson North Swindon Con
Michael Tomlinson Mid Dorset and North Poole Con
Craig Tracey North Warwickshire Con
David Tredinnick Bosworth Con
Anne-Marie Trevelyan Berwick-upon-Tweed Con
Elizabeth Truss South West Norfolk Con
Thomas Tugendhat Tonbridge and Malling Con
Andrew Turner Isle of Wight Con
Andrew Tyrie Chichester Con
Ed Vaizey Wantage Con
Shailesh Vara North West Cambridgeshire Con
Martin Vickers Cleethorpes Con
Charles Walker Broxbourne Con
Robin Walker Worcester Con
Ben Wallace Wyre and Preston North Con
David Warburton Somerton and Frome Con
Matt Warman Boston and Skegness Con
Angela Watkinson Hornchurch and Upminster Con
James Wharton Stockton South Con
Helen Whately Faversham and Mid Kent Con
Heather Wheeler South Derbyshire Con
Chris White Warwick and Leamington Con
Craig Whittaker Calder Valley Con
Bill Wiggin North Herefordshire Con
Craig Williams Cardiff North Con
Gavin Williamson South Staffordshire Con
Rob Wilson Reading East Con
Sarah Wollaston Totnes Con
Mike Wood Dudley South Con
William Wragg Hazel Grove Con
Jeremy Wright Kenilworth and Southam Con
Nadhim Zahawi Stratford-on-Avon Con

Correction: This article has been amended to state HM Revenue and Customs said 5% is the lowest rate possible and the UK does not have the lowest in Europe.