Cigarettes in Australia to Cost $40 Per Pack by 2020
The Ballarat and Grampians in Australia will be affected more than other regions by the initiative to raise the price of cigarettes up to $40 per pack by 2020.
In case the change will come into action, smokers will be obliged to pay 75% tax per cigarette pack by 2020. It is $10 more than current price of $29.91.
Why Ballarat and Grampians region will be affected most? It is because data obtained in October 2013 showed that smoking rates in this region is 28% and this is highest percentage across Australia. Robyn Reeves, Ballarat Community Health chief executive officer, said that though latest data show that in this region smoking rates were reduced to 23%, this rate is still high compared to other regions across the country.
Robyn Reeves said that the proposed increase of tax on cigarettes will encourage smokers to get rid of habit which will result in smoking rates drop. Some of many from tobacco taxes will go to smoking cessations programs.
Heavy smoker Mick Maurer lives in Ballarat for years and finds the proposed initiative ridiculous. He said he will probably quit because of high prices on cigarettes, because it is much better to spend those $40 on something else.
The proposal to increase tobacco taxes came after introduction in 2013 of tobacco excise which resulted in a 12.5% increase in the price of tobacco annually in the course of four years. In 2013 the national smoking rate across Australia was 13.3%.
Catherine King, Ballarat MP and Opposition health spokeswoman, told that though the change will affect most of all poor layers of society, it is absolutely necessary to be made because it will help to improve people’s health.
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