Group urges finance ministry to review tax on tobacco companies

Tobacco


The Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) has called on the Federal Ministry of Finance to immediately begin a review of its current tax regime to reflect more proactive and progressive levying system on tobacco companies.

Speaking at a press conference in Abuja on Tuesday, Executive Director, CISLAC, Auwal Ibrahim Musa stated this at a press conference in Abuja yesterday.He said the issue of increased tobacco taxation remains a win-win for the country, adding that on one hand, it drastically reduces the number of smokers as adequate taxation increases prices of tobacco products thereby making the products less affordable. He also stated that the country would generate more revenues.

According to him, the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) conducted by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in 2012 puts the average percentage of daily smokers in the country at 5.7 per cent with a projection that this percentage is expected to rise in the coming years.

He said: “CISLAC by this address calls on the Federal Ministry of Finance to see this as an urgent national call and duty to immediately begin a review of its current tax regime to reflect more proactive and progressive levying system on tobacco companies.

“We wish to by this means state that CISLAC welcomes the trend whereby the Federal Ministry of Health (FMoH) is taking proactive measures in calling to mind and drawing attention of players in both the entertainment industry and indeed the citizenry at large to the harmful effects of tobacco consumption and the provisions of the National Tobacco Control (NTC) Act of 2015 that has at the heart of it the protection of present and future generations of Nigerians against the harmful effects of tobacco use.”

Musa, therefore, called on the media to push for the implementation of the National Tobacco Control Act as its “immediate and futuristic agenda” to drum up awareness on tobacco danger.



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