From October 20, the price of cigarettes will be increased as the Government has increased customs and duties on cigarettes to encourage citizens to stop smoking.
In his 2020/2021 budget presentation, Finance Minister Colm Imbert said the State spends $500,000 a year to treat one lung cancer patient.
“For too long, we have had to deal with the negative consequences associated with the high consumption of these products,” Imbert said.
He said because of this, the Government is introducing several “disincentives” to constrain the smoking habit.
“We will increase excise duty by 20 per cent on locally manufactured tobacco products, we will increase customs duty by 20 per cent on imported tobacco from the Common Market Origin and we will adjust the customs duty payable on tobacco products imported into Trinidad and Tobago from extra-regional sources to have it receive equal treatment to that of the common market.”
Imbert said the penalties for selling alcohol and tobacco to minors, as well as all other penalties under the Liquor Licenses Act and the Tobacco Control Act will be increased by 200 per cent.
These increases take effect on January 1, 2021.
Reporter: Sharlene Rampersad