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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
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Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 02:44 PM

$20 a pack: tax slug for smokers
Josh Gordon

July 5, 2009
CIGARETTES would cost more than $20 for a packet of 30 and come in plain wrapping if radical proposals now under consideration by the Federal Government are accepted.
The Government is considering the cigarette tax hike and a ban on all remaining tobacco advertising and sponsorship in response to its yet-to-be-released Preventative Health Taskforce report.
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Age: Australia
The landmark report, now being examined by Health Minister Nicola Roxon, urges the Government to slash smoking rates over the next decade to 9 per cent, reducing the number of people aged 14 and over who smoke daily from 3 million to 2 million.
Under the changes, some of which were canvassed in a discussion paper released late last year, cigarette packets would be generic and plain, with larger graphic health warnings taking up about 90 per cent of the front and 100 per cent of the back.
Tobacco companies also face a blanket ban on all sponsorship, internet sales, public relations activities and "corporate responsibility" donations.
The plan has been strongly backed by anti-smoking organisations such the Public Health Association, the Cancer Council and the National Heart Foundation, but has alarmed cigarette companies, which claim it could be unlawful.
A submission from VicHealth, an independent publicly funded health advisory body, endorsed the cigarette tax jump, involving an immediate price rise of 7.5 cents per cigarette, or 21 per cent per pack, to bring the cost of smoking into line with World Health Organisation standards.
"Once effective measures are in place to prevent revenue evasion and support smokers unable to quit, we support further increases to ensure that the average price for a packet of 30 cigarettes is not lower than $20," the submission says.
VicHealth also wants all remaining forms of tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship banned within 12 months. VicHealth chief executive Todd Harper said price rises had been proven to significantly curb smoking , with each 10 per cent rise typically leading to a 4 per cent drop in consumption.
He warned that tobacco companies had become "very adept at exploiting any loopholes", which meant there needed to be a total advertising ban. "As soon as you close down one form of tobacco advertising, we see tobacco (advertising) investment migrate to other areas."
An initial 7.5-cent excise hike would lift retail prices for a pack of 30 cigarettes from about $13.50 to $16.35. Prices would then rise to $20.15, with the total federal tax take growing by 17.5 cents per cigarette to 42.95 cents under the regime being considered by Ms Roxon.
A submission by the Cancer Council and the National Heart Foundation to the Government's review of the tax system being undertaken by Treasury Secretary Ken Henry concluded that a 17.5 cent excise increase would raise an extra $1.97 billion worth of federal revenue each year, providing more than enough to fund preventative health programs.
The price rise would also convince some 306,000 adults to quit and prevent 183,000 children from eventually taking up the habit. "Increased tobacco excise would also generate substantial revenue for government — more than enough to provide effective tobacco control support services and offset declines in excise from relatively fewer people purchasing tobacco products," the submission says.
Unlike most other developed nations, Australia has not increased tobacco excise and customs duty since 1999, except to cover inflation.
A submission from tobacco giant Philip Morris claimed that proposed tax increases were excessive and any moves to introduce plain packaging and ban all remaining advertising were unnecessary and could be considered unlawful.
"It is clear that some of the proposed measures will significantly reduce our ability to compete for a share of the existing adult smoker market, violating competition principles whilst not contributing to public health," the submission said. British American Tobacco has also warned that mandatory plain packaging could breach the constitution.
A spokeswoman for Ms Roxon said the report of the taskforce, headed by Rob Moodie, was received last Wednesday. Any options for tackling tobacco-related harm would be "closely examined".
The Victorian Government introduced laws last month that will ban tobacco displays in shops and ban smoking in cars with passengers under the age of 18.



Thoughts?
I know this was released on the 5th of July - but the government's gone ahead and accepted these new laws, and they'll be in place within the next month, apparently.
Note: I was told it was said to rise tomorrow to $20 a packet, but its quite the hike. I realise that on saturday the price went up by $1.50 a packet of 30, but are still yet to rise to as much as $20.

I'm particularly outraged at this. The government's gone to lengths to warn people of the danger they're getting into - commercials, branding on packaging, etc. If we decide to smoke, why should we be paying such a substantial amount? Soon enough, they'll be a rarity and we'll be paying more for cigarettes than cigars.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 03:09 PM

I realize the "slippery slope" here, when it comes to governments deciding what is good for the populace and what isn't, but cigarettes are such a black-and-white issue for me that I don't find any other reason to not be in full support of this.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 03:44 PM

I'm kind of for it, it shouldn't be made easy for people to ruin their own health. Perhaps with such high prices, less people will decide to take up smoking.

There was uproar here in Ireland when the government banned smoking in public places, but people soon got over it.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 05:26 PM

good - i say it's great to put the prices up. perhaps it'll put some people off.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 07:03 PM

Glad I don't live there. they are $6.35 (with tax) a pack here.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 07:20 PM

wowza! I am glad I don't live in Aussie for this law :O
Fags are 8.45 euro here and its wild expensive as it is, just to imagine 20 euro. I would have to stop smoking altogher.
But I guess thats the idea :P



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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 07:32 PM

This is beyond ridiculas. If they do make it $20 a pack (Im assuming that's quite expensive). I hope the smokers over there give them hell. A lot of the people who smoke are too poor for this, yet, they'll still spend it, and it'll just send them into more problems. Particularly during the reccession, because smokers will find it way to hard to go cold turkey with the stress brought on by that. It's not the government's job to nanny us. And it usually doesn't stop people. And more people will turn to illegal knock off fags (the UK actually had a campaign lately about, if you are going to smoke, smoke the real thing, because illegal ones have so many more chemicals, and at higher levels, etc), which are, for the record, so very very much worse then legal fags. Or they'll stock up on foriegn duty free ones, and lose the country any of the tax.

That, and a lot of smokers would probably end up turning to rollies rather then quit, if they aren't up for the knock off fags. Rollies are always cheaper, because of the nature of them, and yet, you get so much more for the same price. I roll. I buy 12.5g for £2.50, I can make 30-40 fags out of that, where as to buy actual fags, £2.50 would only get me 10.

You think if people are willing to keep smoking even if they know what it does to you, they won't be willing to waste their money on it? Think again. Some people keep smoking when its given them a hole in their neck. The idea is you work on trying to make people not want to smoke, not drain their pockets of whatever they have left.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 07:50 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Invert View Post
This is beyond ridiculas. If they do make it $20 a pack (Im assuming that's quite expensive). I hope the smokers over there give them hell. A lot of the people who smoke are too poor for this,
If they're too poor for this then they should spending there money on other, more important things then cigarettes.

And it's just another way for them to make more money, if they wanted to stop people from smoking then they should ban it, like they ban everything else they don't like.

But alas, if it was like that over here then it would just be more benefits wasted on fags and not on food for the receivers children.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 07:51 PM

I fully support this, because it seems to me that smokers are completely ignorant of the fact that their smoke doesn't just hurt them. They might say that people have the choice of avoiding smokers, but what about the children of people who smoke inside the house? This is one more step in getting people to stop smoking, and I hope it works.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 07:56 PM

smoke outside?

And as I said, people will still buy them, if they still smoke after having a hole in their throat due to smoking. Apparently in mice, mice are as willing to experience as much pain to get nicotine, as they are to get heroin.

I spend about £50 a month on tobacco sometimes, and I have no money really.

People should be spending it on better things, doesn't mean they will. It's like when my friends go clubbing, they spend between £30-60 on one night out. People drive everywhere instead of catching buses, and end up spending so much more on petrol. We waste money, particularly if we are getting enjoyment from what we do. It's true.

And banning things leads to an increase in the illegal sales of such things. A lot of smokers know where to get knock off fags, or knows someone who does... and these, these are much worse for your health.

Quote:


I fully support this, because it seems to me that smokers are completely ignorant of the fact that their smoke doesn't just hurt them. They might say that people have the choice of avoiding smokers, but what about the children of people who smoke inside the house?


Me, and none of my smokers friends are like this. There are lots who are, but lots who aren't.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 2nd 2009, 11:03 PM

I'm with Tegan.

Everyone - lower or upper class - spends a lot of money on luxuries that you can simply live without. Cigarettes are one of them.

This thread isn't about where people smoke - those that are safe and hygienic with their cigarettes (or at least try their hardest to be hygienic when it comes to smoking) are affected by this too. And fyi, its illegal to smoke inside and/or in a car with a minor under 18 in Australia - so we're assuming that those that smoke with minors around are indeed breaking the law.

But seriously, $20 a packet? Come on.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 3rd 2009, 12:25 AM

$20 a packet!!


They're only a fiver here, and I hope that never changes!
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 3rd 2009, 12:47 AM

damn im glad im not there.
normal ones here of $5
and blacks [ my favorites] are $10

good for them though, that would be the motivation i need to quit
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 3rd 2009, 07:08 PM

I really despise smoking but i can see where smokers are coming from, and i have to admit $20 is quite ridiculous and will only get people into more debt.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 3rd 2009, 07:58 PM

I do agree with this law, if people have to choose between feeding their baby or buying a pack of cigarettes...
They don't have to go completely cold turkey they can just limite their smoking to maybe a pack a month.
They should but this law here where I live the pack is around $2.50.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 4th 2009, 07:55 AM

I'm going to Mexico, then.
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 4th 2009, 08:23 AM

20 bucks a pack?
almost 10 bucks a pack?

Things like this make me wonder why people smoke...
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 4th 2009, 07:01 PM

Yeah but those who don't smoke think its a good thing.. But you that never have smoked don't understand the craving, everyone who smokes is going to be skint in Australia! unless they quit..
   
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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 4th 2009, 07:05 PM

Smoking harms not only those who smoke, but everyone around them. I say raise the prices, at least we can fund the hospitals with all the lung cancer patients now. Maybe if smoking only affected the person using it, maybe that would be different. But it doesn’t it harms others that choose not to smoke in the first place, and to me, that is terrible. Even if you smoke by yourself, you still have it on your clothes and other people can get third hand smoke just from hugging you. They are terrible things, and it should cost an arm and a leg.




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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 6th 2009, 05:48 AM

They don't know what they're doing, ignore it, change it, or go insane.


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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 6th 2009, 07:41 AM

Quote:
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They don't know what they're doing, ignore it, change it, or go insane.
I'll go insane, kthnx.
No-one can change those lobbies, its too difficult. They fight day and night for laws like this, when its clearly going to damage a lot of people financially.

I have to go to the doctor's to get some sort of nicotine pill to keep me from smoking. If I go two weeks without a cigarette, he cuts me down to a different pill... that's how addicted I am.

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Re: Australia: Cigarettes $20 a packet. - August 9th 2009, 12:43 PM

Personally I think it's a good thing. I know way too many 13-14 year-olds who smoke half a pack to a full pack a day. Hope it puts them off.


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