The Ministry of Health wants to legislate to tax tobacco

The Ministry of Health wants to legislate to tax tobacco

Islamabad: The Ministry of National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination has appealed to the Ministry of Finance to introduce a Federal Health Levy Bill in Parliament to increase taxes and impose taxes on tobacco and sugar drinks to prevent non-communicable diseases.

In a letter to the Finance Ministry, Dr. Faisal Sultan, Special Assistant to Prime Minister Imran Khan for Health, urged that 20 cigarettes be charged Rs. What He said that the cabinet on June 18, 2019. He said that irrational diseases like heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and chronic lung disease were collectively responsible for about 68 per cent of all deaths in Pakistan. As part of the Sustainable Development Goals, Pakistan is committed to reducing one-third of premature deaths from diseases caused primarily by tobacco. [SDGs]He added that the government could achieve this goal by reducing tobacco consumption among the youth by introducing a health tax.
He said in a letter that the imposition of health tax on tobacco and sugar drinks as per the decision of the federal cabinet would prove to be a catalyst for reducing non-communicable diseases in the country, adding that it would increase tobacco revenue. It will also help increase.

A recent study of tobacco economics, in collaboration with leading researchers who have been studying the economics of tobacco control policy for 30 years, revealed that Pakistan scored 0.88 points out of 5 on the cigarette tax scorecard of 170 countries. This score is the lowest in the region. According to the Ministry of Health’s Tobacco Control Cell, tobacco use kills 160,100 people each year in Pakistan, while about 23.9 million adults currently use tobacco in any form in the country.

The ministry said that the revenue from health tax on tobacco and sugar drinks would be allocated for the development of the health sector more than allocated in its normal budget.

The federal cabinet had decided to include the provisions of the Federal Health Levy Bill in the Finance Bill, 2019, but for some unknown reason it could not be part of it. Measures to curb the illicit manufacture and illicit trade in cigarettes and tobacco were also to be included in the finance bill. Dr. Faisal Sultan has now once again recommended to the Ministry of Finance that immediate steps be taken to present the Federal Health Levy Bill before Parliament.

It should be noted that cigarette makers are very influential in Pakistan. The three largest tobacco companies have reported an increase in their profits, as reflected in their public filings. Despite pocketing billions of rupees, companies are pressuring the government to reduce taxes and avoid slapping health-related taxes on their products.


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