Federal coffers lose billions as Aussies kick smoking habits
Smoking and alcohol consumption rates have dropped around the country following hikes on excise taxes.
“[But] while cutting down on smoking and drinking means a healthier Australia, it also means reduced revenue for the government,” Sofie Formica pointed out.
In fact, the plummet in smoking rates has already seen revenue fall by more than $2 billion short of budget expectations in a single year.
“We know that increased prices are one of the leaders that can be used to discourage people, particularly young people, from taking up smoking, and encourage people that are already smoking to quit,” Cancer Council Queensland General Manager James Farrell told Sofie Formica.
But Mr Farrell says it’s not all bad news for the budget: while less is coming in through excise tax, smoking costs Australian taxpayers more than $130 billion in healthcare.
“So reducing people smoking will absolutely reduce those costs on health systems.”
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