Thursday, 18 October 2012

Why tobacco duty is now counter-productive...


I am grateful to Mr Worstall for digging out the stat from the bowels of HMRC reporting:

Key findings for hand rolling tobacco (HRT)
• The illicit market share for HRT was estimated to be 38 per cent in 2010-11, with associated revenue losses of £660 million.

So there you have it folks. For roll-ups (where brand is far less significant than for cigarettes) four out of ten of them are made with "non-UK duty paid" tobacco. And most of that is smuggled.

Instead of thinking about the loss of revenue, let's think instead of the children who are taking up smoking because the man in the van doesn't care who he sells to.

The policy has to change. The strategy of bashing us over the head with taxes, health warnings and restrictions isn't working. As we heard (and I reported) recently, in West Yorkshire:

30 per cent of 11 to 15-year-olds had tried smoking at least once...


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Please don't ignore us.We are glad our impact is being felt. It's not just about smuggling. Vast amounts of revenue is being lost because of deliberate protest. It's about time the Govt took note and realised what is going on.

Thousands of us go abroad specifically in protest at the way we are treated as undesirable lepers by the state.

I have just got back from my latest cross border shopping trip and saved £1300.

We have educated ourselves on the meaning of "UK guidelines" and we take measures with relevant documentation to protect ourselves from harassment from UKBA to prove that we are not smugglers just pissed off adult consumers who want to contribute to the UK economy but don't want to be treated an inch away from criminals because we enjoy a legal product that others, with far more wealth and power than we have, do not like.

In short, if the Govt gets off our backs, sets the tax on tobacco to realistic levels and not punative ones, then we'll start buying at home again and Britain does need our money at present and can't afford to turn its nose up at it.

Pat Nurse.