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Tax and super

Making our tax system more sustainable so we can cover the Government’s responsibilities for the next generation

Promoting health by reducing smoking

One of the most effective ways to discourage smoking is to increase the price of cigarettes. Increases in tobacco excise over the last two decades have contributed to significant declines in the number of people smoking daily.

The Government will implement a further four annual 12.5 per cent increases in tobacco excise and excise equivalent customs duties, with the first increase to take effect on 1 September 2017. This will replicate the annual increases that have been in place for the past four years.

The Government will also limit the duty free tobacco allowance in Australia to 25 cigarettes or equivalent.

To counter any increased risk from tobacco being illegally smuggled into Australia, the Government will also enhance the compliance and enforcement framework for illicit tobacco activity.

This will include stronger penalties and more support for the Border Force team responsible for enforcing tobacco importation restrictions. The Government will provide an additional $7.7 million for the Tobacco Strike Team to combat illicit tobacco activity. Existing penalties will also be strengthened, including by introducing tiered offences not currently available under the Customs Act.

Australians’ smoking rates have fallen, but there is more work to do