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POLITICS & LAW

Puff Up Cigarette Tax, Experts Urge

Cartons of cigarettes are displayed at a kiosk outside Beijing West Railway Station in 2013. Photo: VCG
Cartons of cigarettes are displayed at a kiosk outside Beijing West Railway Station in 2013. Photo: VCG

Anti-smoking advocates are urging China to overhaul its tobacco taxes to stem a recent increase in sales after years of declines.

China hasn’t raised its rates since 2015, when the wholesale cigarette tax was increased from 5 to 11%, causing sales to drop for two years in a row.

But purchases began to rebound last year, according to China’s State Tobacco Monopoly Bureau. That has prompted concerns that the effect of the 2015 increase might be wearing off as incomes rise in China.

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