ISLAMABAD, (Parliament Times) : Sana Ullah Ghumman, General Secretary and Director Operations of Pakistan National Heart Association (PANAH), said that it is incredibly sad that 17% GST has been imposed on formula milk but no tax increase was reported on tobacco taxes. Everyday 1200 children in Pakistan start smoking due to one of fhe cheapest prices of cigarettes in the world. The government needs to address these concerns. If milk prices can increase than why not cigarettes?
According to a PIDE study Tobacco causes a health burden of Rsm 615 billion bon the economy of the country. Increase on tobacco taxes can help collect significantly higher revenue than essential products. People are already suffering from economic problems. Increasing the Tax of essential commodities is only going to widen the gap of economic disparity.
He was referring to the proposals to increase taxes on more than 140 essential items in the mini-budget. He said he is disappointed that despite please and proposals to increase taxes on tobacco no increase was reported in the last three years of this government. Tobacco taxes can help generate an annual revenue of over Rs. 45 billion. This can fund several government campaigns such as Sehat Sahulat Programme and help improve the lives of common people.