A spokesperson said that last year the government increased VAT and excise again and the illegal tobacco market has soared.
“The government is trying to achieve two things, decrease smoking rates and increase revenue from legitimate markets and the statistics show that currently they are achieving neither with the predicted tax take from tobacco down by over €80million and the consumption rate at 29 per cent as it has been for 5 years,” the spokesperson said. “Any increase will make this worse and solve nothing.”
The spokesperson added that illegal cigarettes are available in every town and city across the country with consumers “choosing to pay €4.50 to criminals and contribute to local gangs” rather than pay €9.20 in a local shop and contributing to the Irish economy.
Leaving aside the false notion that paying tax is contributing to the Irish economy, what did these greedy, exploitative idiots expect?
Hat tip: Dick Puddlecote