Govt decides to levy ‘Gunah Tax’ on carbonated drinks: sources
ISLAMABAD: In an effort to encourage healthy lifestyle, the federal government is planning to impose ‘Gunah Tax’ on carbonated drinks after cigarettes, said sources.
According to the details, the government is mulling to slap new taxes on cigarettes and carbonated drinks. The sources said that the government is planning to levy Rs2 per 100 ml bottle of carbonated beverage and Rs5 to 15 on each packet of cigarettes under the new tax.
Justifying the sin tax, the government officials said that carbonated drinks raise risk of diabetes and other fatal diseases among the people.
Whereas an official from health department said that the money collected by imposing the new taxes will be spent on the health sector.
It is pertinent to mention here that the sources said the federal government was excogitating over different options as high-level consultation meetings are underway in this regard.
ARY News correspondent Jahangir Khan said the centre had decided to levy the sin tax on smoking tobacco. “The earning from this tax would be expended on welfare of masses under Prime Minister National Health Programme,” he said.
This step will likely climb cigarette prices as earning through this tax is estimated to be in billions of rupees. It is also pertinent to mention that this tax is not new to the world as it has already been introduced in some of the European Union countries in different forms and in Philippines it has been imposed with passing of Sin Tax Reform bill.
According to a World Health Organisation report, “Within the first year of passing the bill, Philippines raised more than USD$1.2 billion and allowed the Philippines to provide health care to an additional 14 million families or roughly 45 million Filipinos.”
Jahangir Khan said a tax of around 5 to 15 rupees a packet was also expected to be levied.
According to government sources, more than four billions of cigarette packs are sold across the country a year.
Sin Tax is being anticipated to generate billions of rupees tax to the public exchequer.