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Shaw: Cigarette tax collection not effective, almost 800 million sticks smoked annually

Published:Monday | May 16, 2016 | 5:31 AM

Finance Minister Audley Shaw says Jamaica has not been effective in collecting taxes on cigarettes.

Shaw says each year Jamaicans consume close to 800 million sticks of cigarettes.

However, he says the government collects taxes on only a half of the total number of cigarettes consumed.

 

Finance Minister Audley Shaw

PHOTO: Finance Minister Audley Shaw

Shaw says the new Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA) will help customs to be more effective in monitoring how many cigarettes enter the island.

In his Budget presentation last week, Shaw announced an increase in Special Consumption Tax on cigarettes from $12 per stick to $14 per stick.

The new tax on cigarettes will help to raise some $13.7 billion to help fund the $580 billion-Budget for the 2016/2017 fiscal year.