June 4, 2020
by Forest EU

EU Council’s call for tobacco tax hikes “an affront to poorer smokers”

Forest EU recalls that for every €10 Europeans spend on cigarettes, an average of €8 are duties and taxes already.

Brussels, Thursday 4th June 2020 – European smokers’ group described the Council of the EU’s call for an increase of the tobacco excise duty minimum rates as “an affront to poorer smokers”.

Guillaume Périgois, director of Forest EU, said:

“Tobacco excise duties are already exceptionally high: for every €10 Europeans spend on cigarettes, an average of €8 are duties and taxes, totalling €84 billion every single year.

“Further increases in tobacco excise duties will discriminate against those who are less well off, and boost black market imports along with robberies of tobacconists. Contrary to what the Council’s conclusions claim, there’s nothing ‘urgent’ nor ‘necessary’ in this.

“Since they are the ones who are primarily affected by these policies, we urge the Commission to acknowledge the preferences of informed smokers and refrain from increasing tobacco duties”.


Further comments:

Forest EU

Guillaume Périgois
+32 4 78 98 07 43

Note to editors:

  • Forest EU is a campaign informing smokers about the issues that affect them in the European Union and engaging with stakeholders so the views of informed adults with an interest in tobacco policy are considered within the EU’s decision-making process.
  • Forest EU has an independent organizational structure and advocates for the consumer, not the tobacco industry. Forest EU accepts there are serious health risks associated with smoking tobacco and does not, through its campaigning activities, seek to promote or encourage it.
  • For more information, visit http://forestonline.eu/

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