Government acts to increase tax on tobacco

THE Abbott Government officially moved to increase the tax on tobacco today, introducing new laws to enact excise rises on cigarettes.

While the taxes have already gone up, the legislation introduced in the House will enshrine continued prices rises for all tobacco products sold in Australia.

The legislation was one of more than 90 different acts left hanging after last year's federal election, which Treasurer Joe Hockey is putting in place to bolster the budget.

It will officially put in place four rises in the tobacco excise each year in September until 2016, with the first already in place since December last year.

The laws, once passed, will also attached future rises in tobacco taxes to average weekly earnings data, rather than the consumer price index.

That measure will mean cigarette prices will go up twice a year from now on, instead of once every 12 months.

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