Only from 12 euros per pack smokers quit
‘Only with a substantial increase in the excise tax on tobacco will enough cigarette smokers stop to achieve the goals of the National Prevention Agreement. In order to get 10 percent of smokers to put out their last cigarette, a minimum price of €12 per pack is needed,” the researchers said.
For this study, the researchers asked nearly 1,500 daily smokers from the Netherlands about the amount of cigarettes or roll-your-own rolls they would buy and smoke in one day at eight different prices. These were between €0 and €6 per cigarette, and between €0 and €4 per gram of tobacco.
Dutch smokers willing to pay a lot of money for tobacco
The research data shows how many cigarettes someone would smoke if tobacco were free, how much consumption decreases if the price goes up and what the price is at which someone says they will no longer buy tobacco at all. Dutch smokers appear willing to pay a lot of money for tobacco; a third even found it no problem to pay the highest price.
According to the researchers, this not only indicates how addictive cigarettes are, but also how affordable they are. For example, figures from the World Health Organization (WHO) show that cigarettes in the Netherlands are almost twice as affordable as in the United Kingdom. ‘People adjust their consumption when they notice the difference in price in their wallet, ie when something becomes more or less affordable,’ says UM researcher Cloé Geboers. ‘When it comes to discouraging smoking, significant increases in excise duties, such as the €1 increase in 2020, are therefore highly desirable. After all, they have the greatest effect.’
After the increase in excise duty in April 2020, the average price of a cigarette in the Netherlands is €0.36 and that of a roll-your-own-roller at €0.22. The average price at which daily smokers said to quit or at which demand becomes elastic is between €2 and €3.50 per cigarette or roll-your-own-roll. People who smoke shag are actually a lot more sensitive to price increases than people who smoke cigarettes.
Do not separate the price between cigarette and shag too far
All in all, the researchers signal that there is a lot of room for a substantial increase in the excise duty on tobacco. They do indicate that the prices for cigarettes and shag should not be too far apart, to prevent price-sensitive people who smoke cigarettes from switching to shag instead of quitting.
Half of ‘chain smokers’ will only stop smoking when a package costs 60 euros
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