World’s largest mar­ket for cig­a­rettes dou­bles tax

China Daily (Canada) - - FRONT PAGE -

China, the world’s largest tobacco maker and con­sumer mar­ket, raised the con­sump­tion tax on cig­a­rettes to 11 per­cent from 5 per­cent, the Min­istry of Fi­nance an­nounced.

The higher rate started on Sun­day and is ex­pected to bring in an ad­di­tional 20 bil­lion yuan ($3.2 bil­lion) in taxes this year com­pared to 2014, re­ported Bloomberg, cit­ing a per­son familiar with the mat­ter. Cig­a­rettes are now also taxed at 0.005 yuan each

It was the first in­crease since May 2009 when the tax on top-brand cig­a­rettes was raised to 56 per­cent from 45 per­cent. The move came amid sim­i­lar bills pro­posed in the US, as re­search showed that a tax hike would lead to lower cig­a­rette con­sump­tion.

China has more than 300 mil­lions smok­ers, al­most the size of the US pop­u­la­tion, and an ad­di­tional 740 mil­lion peo­ple are ex­posed to sec­ond-hand smoke each year. Ac­cord­ing to of­fi­cial data, some 1.36 mil­lion Chi­nese peo­ple die from smok­ing-re­lated dis­eases an­nu­ally.

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