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Tobacco company ‘furious’ over more taxes–furious–over-more-taxes.html

Cigarette makers are ‘furious’ the federal government opted to hike taxes on tobacco.

The tobacco excise will rise 12.5 per cent in each year to 2020 which is likely to lift the cost of a packet of cigarettes to $40 or more.

Imperial Tobacco Australia has now accused Treasurer Scott Morrison of going back on his word after he smacked Labor for considering a similar plan.

‘They’ve now contradicted their own statements entirely. We justifiably furious,’ Imperial head of corporate and legal affairs Andrew Gregson said.

Mr Morrison’s budget change will deliver the coalition government an extra $4.7 billion over four years.

Imperial argues the only group that will be happy about it will be organised crime, which already reaps more than $1 billion a year in excise from taxpayers through the sale of under-the-counter tobacco products.

‘The government needs to stop treating Australia’s three million plus smokers like second-class citizens and respect their right to make informed choices about what is a legal product,’ Mr Gregson said in a statement on Tuesday.

‘This will infuriate them.’

Australia is one of the most regulated countries in the world in which to smoke.

Imperial Tobacco Australia’s ultimate parent is the UK-headquartered Imperial Brands which sells tobacco products across the world and has interests in logistics.

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