Cigarettes become more expensive

The price of a pack of 20 cigarettes will rise by EUR 0.50 in Ireland, reports The Irish Times.
Alcohol has been spared price increases in the budget, but a pack of 20 cigarettes has been hit with a now routine 50-cent tax increase. The increase will push the price of a pack of 20 past the EUR 15.50 mark, while other tobacco products will see a pro-rata increase.
It was condemned by retailers as too high and by the Irish Heart Foundation (IHF) as insufficient. IHF director Chris Macey said the 50-cent increase in the price of a pack of cigarettes was a sign that Ireland had become “complacent” in the fight against nicotine addiction and called the budget a “missed opportunity” to get the ball rolling on bringing the cost of a pack down to EUR 20 by 2025.
“We led the way with our smoking ban. Other countries are now approaching a tobacco end-game. In New Zealand, for example, new laws mean under-14s won’t be allowed to buy tobacco in their lifetimes. But in Ireland we are becoming complacent.” He also expressed disappointment that the IHF’s call for a 10-cent excise tax on every millilitre of e-cigarette liquid sold went unheard. “Research shows that young people who vape are up to five times more likely to move on to (tobacco) smoking than those who don’t,” Macey said. “We cannot sacrifice another generation of children to nicotine addiction.”
Retailers Against Smuggling said the excise tax increase would further fuel the black market and called the tax increase “extremely disappointing.” Spokesman for the lobby group Benny Gilsenan said the move would “inevitably push many consumers to the black market for the first time and makes illicit tobacco an even more lucrative commodity for organised crime gangs”.

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