Parliamentary Question by Dr Intan Azura Mokhtar:
To ask the Minister for Finance whether sufficient tobacco taxes have been imposed on loose tobacco leaves and cigarette paper sold in many shops in Singapore.
Parliamentary Reply by Minister for Finance Mr Heng Swee Keat:
Singapore adopts a multi-pronged strategy to reduce smoking prevalence. This includes restrictions on tobacco advertising, smoking prohibitions in public places, public education, provision of smoking cessation services and taxation on tobacco products.
Among loose tobacco products, Ang Hoon is the most common. In 2013, the excise duty for Ang Hoon was raised by 25% from $239 to $299 per kilogram. Together with other tobacco control measures, tax increases have helped to discourage the consumption of loose tobacco products. From 2013 to 2016, the amount of loose tobacco products released for local consumption decreased by more than 30%.
The Ministry of Finance will continue to work with the Ministry of Health to monitor international best practices in tobacco control and adopt appropriate measures to control tobacco use.