definition of plant or machinery is given in Inland Revenue Ordinance.
In practice, the term “machinery” seldom gives rise to disputes.
However, there are a number of cases involving the question “what is
old UK case, which is not a Revenue case, called Yarmouth versus France,
“plant” was said to mean: “whatever apparatus is used by a business man
for carrying on his business, not his stock-in-trade which he buys or
makes for sale; but all goods and chattels, fixed or movable, live or
dead, which he keeps for permanent employment in his business”. This is
obvious a very wide definition and has not normally been adopted for
deciding what is a plant, it is necessary to look at the characteristics
and purposes of the asset created by that expenditure. This is often
called the “functional test”--- that is to ask whether the asset is part of the
apparatus with which the business is carried on.
"plant" is frequently distinguished from an "building or
structure" --- the former is an "asset" that can be
detached from the "building" --- the latter is part
of the premises or setting in which the business is carried on.
practice, electrical fitting which is not part of the building or structure and
is removable can qualify as a plant.
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