Qatar to promote a healthier lifestyle by imposing taxes on tobacco

An upsurge in cigarette prices are expected to take place due to a recently announced tax implementation on tobacco products, commencing from the 1st of January 2019. The taxes imposed are one of Qatar’s strategy to fight against tobacco and obesity in 2019. It also comes as part of The National Health Strategy 2018-2022 which indeed adds up to the National Vision 2030, aiming at a higher quality of life. It also aims to decrease the frequency of smoking and includes the execution of tobacco control. Not only is the implementation to decrease tobacco consumption, but to also protect non-smokers such as children from passive smoking.

The Ministry of Public Health are working continuously with their partners to decrease tobacco intake in Qatar by 30% in 2022, aligning with the national target of the National Health Strategy 2018-2022. The law also prohibits advertising and promotions of tobacco products, Sweika and other tobacco chewing items. The selling of electronic cigarettes are also banned. The rise in tobacco prices have led to smokers rushing to stores to purchase their cigarette brand leading to a somewhat hoarding situation. Several shops have practiced attaining unwarranted profits, which puts the consumer at a higher risk and the country in a situation of inflation.

These strategies and implementations are set to create an increased smoke-free environment and encourage a healthier lifestyle in the country, as more action is needed to protect non-smokers from the harmful effects from tobacco and also to inspire smokers to quit.

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