Hard on heels of No Smoking Day campaigners seek rise in tobacco tax in the budget
Health groups call for tobacco tax escalator to rise to 5% in Budget
| A submission to the Treasury in advance of the Budget by ASH and the UK Centre for Tobacco Control Studies (UKCTCS), endorsed by 87 health organisations, urges the Chancellor to maintain the 5% above inflation tax increase introduced last year and to continue raising the tax at that level between now and 2015. At the same time, the health groups are calling on the Government to implement other measures to reduce smoking such as the introduction of plain, standard tobacco packaging. Raising the tobacco tax escalator from 2% to 5% above inflation would reduce smoking while at the same time raise much needed revenue.
In addition to the 5% tax rise, ASH and the UKCTCS are urging the Government to implement measures to reduce the risk of smokers down-trading to cheaper brands rather than quitting.
“Raising the price of cigarettes through taxation is an effective way of encouraging smokers who are thinking of quitting to make that step. High prices can also deter young people from smoking. Raising tobacco tax also increases Government revenue so it’s a win- win situation with benefits to both the economy and health.”