The Indonesian government is planning to raise the nation’s cigarette excise tax rates in an effort to reduce smoking prevalence, particularly among children, reports Tempo. The amount of the increase has not yet been determined.
“If we look at the data in 2019, it (the smoking prevalence among children) was still 9.1 percent. So there’s still quite a lot to be dropped,” said Titik Anas, the Finance Ministry’s special staffer for sectoral fiscal policy.
“The price of cigarettes in Indonesia is actually higher compared to the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. But if we compare it with Singapore and Malaysia, it is still relatively cheap.” Titik also warned that the government must be careful in increasing the cigarette excise tax as it will potentially spur illicit cigarette trade.