Philippines - President Aquino has stated he will prioritize increase in the tax on cigarettes..

August 18, 2010 - President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III on Monday, August 16th said he will most likely prioritize increase in the tax on cigarette as recently proposed by the Department of Health (DOH).

Health Secretary Enrique Ona has been pushing for a 400 percent increase in cigarette tax that would adjust price of a cigarette stick from P2 to P7 and a pack from P30 (0.67 USD) to P120 (2.67 USD). (Philippines - DOH pushing for hefty tax increase on cigarettes..)

“Most probably (because) it is sin taxes,” Aquino said in an ambush interview following the oath-taking of newly-appointed Supreme Court associate justice Maria Lourdes Sereno in Malacanang. Sin tax is a tax levied to socially proscribed goods and services such as tobacco and alcohol.

The President, who himself is a smoker, said he favored increasing taxes on sin products such as cigarettes, noting its benefits to public health. “This sin products have a health burden on the people, may peso value yung healt burden na yan tapos yung taxes versus the health burden are not equal,” he stressed. (Philippines - new president smokes but this should not slow tobacco prevention activities..)

This move intends to lessen smokers in the country especially among the youth and mitigate the health cost that would arise from cigarette use.

Reference: Aquino to support cigarette tax (3:30 p.m.), Jill Beltran/Sunnex,, 8/16/2010.

Philippines - some related news briefs:
Philippines - DOH pushing for hefty tax increase on cigarettes..;
Philippines - Muslim council says smoking is forbidden..;
Philippines - PMFTC has 90% of the tobacco market..;
Philippines - Philip Morris report sales higher than annual 2-3% growth..;
Philippines - National Tobacco Assoc. will oppose any move to reduce demand for tobacco unless govt..;
Philippines - tobacco industry has obtained temporary relief from placing graphic warnings on cigarette packs..;
Philippines - govt agencies and employees barred from unnessary interaction with tobacco industry..;
Philippines - Filipino Muslims forbidden to smoke, trade cigarettes..;
Philippine congress proclaims Aquino 15th president..;
Philippines - tobacco firms claim graphic warnings on cigarette packs are illegal..;
Philippines - new president smokes but this should not slow tobacco prevention activities..:
Philippines - Department of Health wants health warnings on cigarette packs within 90 days..;
Philippines - health groups want more protection from the dangers of tobacco..;
Philippines - DOH warns government agencies to avoid partnerships or accepting donations from tobacco manufacturers..;
Philip Morris Philippines..;
Philippines - DoH pushes for picture warnings on cigarette packs..;
Philippines - PMI - FTC merger may lead smokers continuing to smoke and lure children into a life of nicotine addiction..;
Philippines - PMI and Fortune Tobacco Corp. form new company called PMFTC..;
Philippines - Tanauan City names street Philip Morris..;
Philippines - DOH campaign for 100% smoke-free workplaces..;
Philippines - total tobacco industry could be down 10% to 15% this year..;
Philippines - 2003 ban on advertising and skirting the ban..;
Philippines - June is annually observed as 'No Smoking' Month..;
Philippines may be losing the war against smoking..;;
Philip Morris won't postpone Philippines Eraserheads Concert..;
Philip Morris could be criminally liable for its sponsorship of the event .in the Philippines..;
STOP PMI Sponsoring Concert in Philippines..;
Philippines - Smoker to be deported...