Government 'plans to increase tobacco excise regularly'

THE price of a packet of cigarettes is likely to continue to rise with Federal Government plans released this week revealing the tobacco excise should be regularly increased.

While state and territory governments agreed to the National Tobacco Strategy in November, documents detailing the specific plans were not released publicly until this week.

The top three priorities for the strategy were to continue the fight against big tobacco, including the new plain packaging laws, a wider anti-smoking advertising campaign and further tax rises on the tobacco products.

Various studies of anti-smoking initiatives have shown tobacco price rises as having the biggest effect on helping consumers' quit the habit, especially within the key lower socio-economic group of smokers.

Moves to continue tax increases on tobacco come after the Federal Government increased the excise by 25% in April 2010 - or about 7 cents per cigarette, or nearly $82/kg for tobacco products.

The national strategy reveals the government plans to "continue to implement regular staged increases in tobacco excise as appropriate, to reduce demand for tobacco".



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