Smokers can expect to pay more for their cigarettes in Switzerland next year the director of the Federal Health Office has warned.This content was published on February 3, 2008 - 14:39
According to Thomas Zeltner, the price of a pack will probably increase between SFr0.30 ($0.28) and SFr0.50 in 2009, putting the average cost at around SFr6.50.
The health office will soon put in a request to the Swiss finance ministry to increase the tax on tobacco Zeltner told the Sonntag newspaper, and a decision should be reached by the end of summer.
The country's top health official said that if prices increase, young people tend to smoke less. A ten per cent hike also meant five per cent fewer smokers, he added.
Zeltner said any decision to increase the cost of a pack of cigarettes to SFr10, as suggested by Interior Minister Pascal Couchepin, would have to be taken by parliament. The government can only approve a maximum increase of SFr0.90