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Govt should accept Tax Working Group tobacco recommendations - NZTU

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

The Tax Working Group’s recommendation "that the Government prioritise other measures to help people stop smoking before considering further large increases in the tobacco excise rate beyond the increases currently scheduled" is sound advice, says the New Zealand Taxpayers’ Union.

Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says "The international evidence on how to move past harmful tobacco is alternatives like vaping. The Tax Working Group gets this, yet the Government still stands in the way of more people making the switch."

"The Government prefers taking tobacco excise money from those addicted to smoking and rather than actually helping them quit, cries crocodile tears and ramps up taxes. It is very encouraging to see the Tax Working Group call the politicians out."

"The Government’s current approach to vaping is too punitive and must change. Public Health England has found that vaping is 95 percent safer than tobacco. Making it possible to advertise the health benefits of vaping compared to smoking directly to smokers would help to remedy the public information gap which leads smokers to thinking vaping is just as dangerous as their existing habit."

"In contrast, large, annual tobacco excise increases have been widely acknowledged as a social failure, associated with increased deprivation and crime in our most vulnerable communities. De-regulating vaping products - which have been proven to be successful in helping people to quit smoking - would be more ethical than further punitive increases to tobacco excise."

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