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Consumer Voice urges to increase cess on tobacco products

Chandigarh, Oct 12 (UNI) Consumer Voice, a New Delhi-based NGO, has urged Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal to increase cess on tobacco products in the state which not only helps in generating more revenues to treasurer but also ensure control in smoking culture in the society.
The NGO has urged for imposing cess on all tobacco products to raise revenue for disaster relief is a win-win as it will save lives by reducing consumption across India and save lives affected by the natural calamity. Global experience around the world has shown that even while such a tax increase will decrease use, government revenue will increase.
“Imposing additional cess on all tobacco products, including bidis, will be a huge win for public health and revenue generation. This move will provide much needed relief to the people of Kerala while motivating millions of tobacco users to quit and preventing youngsters from initiating tobacco use,” said Consumer Voice COO Ashim Sanyal, in a stament here today.
WHO recommends that countries impose tobacco excise taxes that amount to at least 75 per cent or more of retail price to achieve the dual objective of reducing tobacco use and increasing government revenue.
Tax burden on bidis post-GST is only 22 per cent compared to 53 per cent for cigarettes and about 60 per cent for smokeless tobacco. All of these are well below the WHO recommended rate of 75 per cent.
UNI DB JW1820
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