ASH Ireland strongly supports a call from the World Health Organisation (W.H.O.) for Governments all around the world to increase taxes on tobacco products. This intervention by the W.H.O. is made in the context of World NO Tobacco Day, which falls on Saturday 31st May 2014.
Dr Ross Morgan Chairman of ASH Ireland, said today, ‘Tobacco kills 5,200 people in this country every year, with some 500,000 in Europe and 6m around the world. It is well established that higher priced cigarettes are especially effective in reducing smoking in lower income groups and in preventing young people from starting to smoke’
Dr Morgan continued, ‘It is also established that a 10% increase in tobacco price can reduce smoking prevalence by 4% in high-income countries and by up to 8% in low-income countries. On this basis; If the Government put an extra 90c on a pack of 20 and related products in the next budget, we can take smoking prevalence to under 18% of the population. This would save lives and significantly reduce the annual health spend on tobacco related disease’
ASH Ireland has consistently called on successive Governments to increase taxes and tobacco price. The response has generally been to place a zero or very small increases, such as 10c – and as the smoker largely ignores small increases – no benefit has emerged.
For contact: Wally Young, Young Communications – 087 2471520