National report on Tobacco Taxation validated
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
Ministry of Trade, Employment and Regional Integration in collaboration with
the Research Centre for International Development (IDRC) and the West African
regional bloc, Ecowas, Tuesday validated The Gambia National Report on Tobacco
The private and public sectors including the Ministry of Justice, the Gambia Bureau of Statistics (GBoS) as well as the Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA) and the Ministry of Trade, Employmentand Regional Integration attended the validation of the report, which was done at the Sunswing Hotel (Formerly Jerma) in Kololi.
touches on The Gambia’s tobacco industry, taxation on tobacco products,
taxation policy on tobacco, as well as tobacco tax system, cost of smoking and
the consumption of tobacco products.
the event, the deputy permanent secretary, Ministry of Finance and Economic
Affairs, Kumba Conateh-Nam, expressed hope that whatever tariff recommendation
is levied on tobacco taxation will be a win-win situation in terms of
optimising tax revenue on tobacco products, avoiding incidence of smuggling and
controlling tobacco smoking.
to her, studies conducted in the developed and developing world stated that one
of the most effective strategies for reducing the incidence of tobacco smoking
is through significant increase in the price of tobacco products.
Yankuba Darboe, a member of the research team said as part of the contribution to fight against smoking, the Consortium for Economic and Social Research (CRES) initiated a Regional Action Research project with the aim of promoting higher taxes on tobacco products so as to curb the consumption of the product.
The economic importance of tobacco industry, he said, looks at, among other things, change of the industry’s contribution to total GDP (industry GDP/total GDP), changes in the contribution of the industry to government revenue (tax revenue/total revenue) as well as changes and importance of jobs and private income which include wages that are generated by the tobacco industry.
He explained that the social cost of tobacco use such as weight of tobacco consumption in the budgets of poor households, estimated costs of the fight against smoking as well as the number of smoking related deaths and cost of treating smoking related diseases and direct cost associated with passive smoking could not be discussed in detail due to serious data gaps in the area.
further remarked that the structure and effectiveness of taxes on tobacco
products were discussed by looking at the various taxes on tobacco products and
tax revenue. He finally
observed that the authorities are strict in enforcing the anti-smoking
Essa Jallow, a representative of the GRA said his office would welcome any suggestion from the research team and tax policy groups to come with optimal strategies in the fight against tobacco.
Author: Amadou Jallow