Israel Finance Minister, Mr. Yuval Steinitz, signed an order to raise the tax on cigarettes and alcohol. As per ordinance, the cigarette tax will be raised from 260.6% to 278.6% and an estimated 10% tax hike will be imposed on cigarettes vendors.
In a letter delivered to Prime Minister Mr. Binyamin Netanyahu, and to Mr. Yuval Steinitz, Prof. Eliezer Robinson, Chairman of the Israel Cancer Association (ICA), and Mrs. Miri Ziv, ICA Director General, voiced support for the tax hike on cigarettes and alcoholic beverages.
Prof. Eliezer Robinson and Mrs. Miri Ziv said "we support the decision supporting the significant price hike on cigarettes and we know for certain that it will have positive implications not only for decreased morbidity and mortality, but also for decreased cardiovascular disease, pulmonary disease morbidity and mortality, etc. According to Ministry of Health data, about 10,000 people die each year from smoking.
Beyond the fact that the cigarette price hike will save lives, as it has been proven to do, and beyond the fact that it constitutes a significant source of income for the country, it will also save tremendous resources for the country - such as revenues for financing disease incidence, damaged fertility and absences from work, etc."
They assert that "the tax hike on alcohol is also to be commended; in the case of alcohol, the risk of cancer is significantly increased when consumption of alcoholic beverages is increased. However, here too, the high price may prevent young people from drinking alcohol, whereby it shall assist not only in reducing morbidity but also in preventing violence, road accidents, and the list goes on and on".