Higher tax proposed to cut smoking

Statistics show 15.6 million Vietnamese people above 15 years old smoke, putting Vietnam in the 3rd place in ASEAN and 9th in the world in the number of smokers. Vietnam is the place where cigarettes are sold at the lowest, making the products affordable to low income earners.

With nearly one dollar a day, smokers like Nguyen Trong Quynh can lit up to 40 cigarettes. The tempting price not to mention easy accessibility to cigarettes makes the addicts hard to quit their habit.

According to Nguyen Trong Quynh from Thanh Xuan district, Hanoi, there are various choices for Vietnamese smokers. They can buy cigarettes everywhere, he added.

According to the World Health Organisation, the price for cigarettes in Vietnam is among the lowest in the world.

It’s also one of reasons why 45% of Vietnamese men are addicted to smoking.

Vietnam has been working to fight against smoking. Nowadays one cannot smoke in educational, medical centres and public transport. All smoking places are equipped with fire extinguishers because climate is dry and hot.

In order to discourage people from smoking, the Ministry of Finance proposed an additional 0.04 USD to the current price for a pack of cigarettes while that of the Ministry of Health is 0.09 USD.-VNA

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