Smokers help the economy

The cost of cigarettes has increased by 40% since 2010. The cost will increase by $1 a year for the next four years to $20 a packet of 20 cigarettes. Will this make smokers quit smoking? Probably not, says a Treasury report, because smoking is addictive. The report also said that smokers help the economy. The sales tax on cigarettes from New Zealand-grown tobacco brought in $145m to the government in the 9 months to the end of March. The import duty on imported cigarettes brought in $746m for the same period.

However, smokers get sick and hospital care costs the government. A study done by the University of Otago in 2007 said that the actual cost to the Ministry of Health from illnesses caused by smoking was $300m to $350m a year. Also, the Treasury report said that smokers die early so there is a saving from National Superannuation and old-age health care.

However, Tariana Turia, co-leader of the Maori Party, wanted to increase the cost of a packet of cigarettes to $100 by 2025. She wants Maori to give up smoking and New Zealand to be a smoke-free country.


Treasury – advises the government on budgets and other financial matters


Note the preposition: increased by 40%; increased to $20
If a packet of cigarettes cost $16 and was increased by $20, how much would it then cost?


Is alcohol addictive? Would drinkers reduce the amount of alcohol they buy if the cost increased?

Do you think the increased cost of cigarettes will encourage smokers to quit?

Could New Zealand become a smoke-free country in the future?


  1. So, I don’t think I should pay for the addiction of others when this become a public problem. For example, when smokers have cancer or when intoxicated people cause car crashes. I believe that prevention is the best strategy to prevent young people to become users of any legal or illegal drugs. And this must start in their own families.

  2. In my opinion that increase prize of cigarette could make people quit smoking.If we increase to 20 dollars a packet,there are many people can not afford it.NZ will become a smoke-free country but it will take a long time.

  3. my opinion I think otherwise because since cigarettes are a necessity, people who smoke cannot be self restrained. To clarify, even if the price goes up some people will buy cigarettes but most people will stop smoking or they could get them from black market.

  4. Valuable info. Lucky me I discovered your website by accident, and I’m shocked why this accident did not happened earlier! I bookmarked it.

  5. Let’s do away with smoking in New Zealand! Bravo!

  6. I think if the cigarettes increace to a high prices to make people quit smoking is a best chiose. even some of the people still can pay for it, but is their choice and it help the econnmy.

  7. OK

  8. In my opinion,the increasingly smokers can bring a large-scale economy to the government,so the cominators would throw dust into citizen’s eyes as a smoke free country..

  9. In my opinion that about increase of cigarette coast, it is good idea make people stop smoke, but this way just can effect a small minority people,so the New Zealand will became a smoke-free country to use long time to achieve.

  10. I don’t think that smokers can help the economy. I agree with Tariana Turia to increase the coast to give up smoking.

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