In Canada, the Quebec Coalition for Tobacco Control believes that it is necessary to raise the tax to reduce the number of smokers. For a carton of 200 cigarettes, taxes are $ 29,80 $ in Quebec. The province with an amount closest to it is Ontario, with 44,37 $ in taxes for the same product.
In a letter sent last November to the ministers concerned, the Coalition called on the Caquist Government to begin the gradual increase of the provincial cigarette tax to the Ontario level. According to his calculations, such an increase could reduce the number of 21 000 smokers and could generate revenues of up to $ 195 $, taking into account the current smuggling rate.
«There is no legitimate justification for a government concerned with the health of the population and especially young people not to take advantage of this favorable context to introduce an increase in the tobacco tax, which would benefit the health of the population as much as to public finances. By excluding tax increases from interventions aimed at preventing smoking among young people, it is literally as if Quebec decided not to vaccinate its children against a widespread childhood illness."Says the spokesperson and co-director of the Coalition, Flory Doucas.
According to Canadian Taxpayers Federation, a tax increase on tobacco in Quebec is not a risk to take, considering that Quebec is one of the provinces where smuggling activities are very high.
«The solution is to put more money into prevention, into public education campaigns and to make the various ways to quit smoking easier to access. Whether patches or electronic cigarettes, etc. All Quebeckers know that smoking is bad for your health. The problem is those who are addicted. It's not a monetary issue, it's finding the way to stop smoking, and make it accessible, Notes the director of the Federation for Quebec, Renaud Brossard.
Even though the contraband market has been declining steadily since 2011, despite 2012 and 2014 tax increases, Brossard believes it is not necessary to "stimulate the market by raising taxes».
«We do not want to displace the problem, if people do not buy cigarettes at the increased price, they will buy them smuggledAdds Brossard, who advocates raising awareness rather than raising taxes.
source : Lesoleil.com/