The Nigerian government has enacted a new tax regime this month, reports ICIR Nigeria
On June 1, the ad valorem tax rate has increased to 30 percent from 10 percent. In addition, the government raised the excise rate on cigarettes to NGN84 ($0.20) from NGN58 per pack of 20 sticks. The excise tax is set to increase further to NGN94 per pack in 2023 and NGN104 per pack in 2024.
Shisha tobacco, which is currently taxed at NGN3,000 per liter and NGN1,000 per kg will increase yearly by NGN500.
“This pro-health tax is an effective public health control measure against behavioral risk factors as it can reduce demand and consumption of tobacco products,” said Minister of State for Health Olorunimbe Mamora.
“It will also prompt tobacco users to switch spending their resources on tobacco products to healthy alternatives such as education, health and others.”
In compliance with the National Tobacco Act (2015) and Regulations (2019), the government has also commenced screening and issuing operational licenses to qualifying tobacco businesses.
The new licensing guideline requires strict adherence to regulations requiring graphic health warnings on tobacco product packaging.
According to Mamora, about 4.5 million Nigerians 15 years and older use tobacco products, and about 3.1 million are current smokers.