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This is a well written original research about the burning issue of tobacco manufacturer lobbying. These manufacturing industries have developed strategies to undercut minimum price laws. By increasing tobacco taxes an effective policy has been designed to decrease tobacco use. In Pakistan currently, 209 million people smoke and about 83 billion cigarettes are smoked per year. As Pakistan has not ratified any anti-smoking policies, there should be great effort made to raise excise duties and taxes on tobacco companies to reduce the demand for cigarettes. In 2017 the local price of cigarettes was about 75 rupees of which half was excise duties .
With this expansion of taxes, there will be responses of reducing tobacco consumption, but the cigarette manufacturing industries developed specific promotions and lobbies to encourage their consumers to purchase lower taxed or lower priced tobacco products. It is the responsibility of health authorities to regulate the prices and promotion of such hazardous products . According to WHO, “MPOWER” was the slogan in 2015, according to which M= monitor tobacco usage, P= Protect people from tobacco smoke, O= offering help to quit tobacco use, W= warning about its hazards, E= enforce to ban its advertisement, R = Raise tobacco taxes .
For smoke free Pakistan and all over the world four key factors should be instruments: Education, legislation, quitting support and financial policies.
1. Bate R. Large cigarette tax hikes, illicit producers, and organized crime: Lessons from Pakistan. AEI Paper & Studies. 2018 Jun 1:1.
2. Apollonio DE, Glantz SA. Tobacco industry promotions and pricing after tax increases: An analysis of internal industry documents.
3. World Health Organization. WHO report on the global tobacco epidemic 2015: raising taxes on tobacco. World Health Organization; 2015 Jul 31.