Uncertainty remains for tobacco tax hike

By Lin Liyao
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, March 14, 2012
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Although China is planning sweeping tax hike on cigarettes, the head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said that the move's effectiveness on curbing smoking is still under review.

Miao Wei is the Minister of Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. [China.org.cn]

Attending the 11th National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing, Minister Miao Wei on Sunday explained to the media that tobacco tax consists of turnover, income and consumption taxes, and the government is looking into whether the measure will have an effect on China's smokers of 350 million.

Miao's comments came two days after Minister of Health Chen Zhu announced that China is planning to raise taxes on mid- and low-end cigarettes, following the tax hike on high-end ones in 2009 that failed to meet targeted reductions of the country's smoking population.

In other efforts, Miao said the health warnings on cigarette packs are being moved from the side to the front, and the government is planning other similar measures to campaign against smoking.

In 2006, China joined the World Health Organization's (WHO) "Framework Convention on Tobacco Control" (FCTC). The following year, the State Council established a group led by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to promote smoking control in China.

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