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Turkey becomes world leader in tax on cigarettes

PHOTO: Paweł Czerwiński (Unsplash)

An increase in the special consumption tax introduced by Turkey’s government in July has caused taxation on cigarettes to jump to 87 percent, higher than the same tax in any other country in the world, the Artı Gerçek news website reported on Sunday.

As a result the price of a pack of brand-name cigarettes jumped from TL 15.50 ($2.79) to TL 18.50 ($3.33), of which TL 15.67 goes to a series of applicable taxes.

The tax hike will significantly affect Turks on minimum wage, which is TL 2,020 ($364) a month in 2019, with a pack of cigarettes a day amounting to 25 percent of monthly wages.

Turkey’s 87 percent is followed by Bosnia and Herzegovina at 85.07 percent, Israel with 85 percent and Slovakia with 84.8 percent.

The special consumption tax, which significantly affects the price of alcohol and cigarettes, is updated every January and July on the basis of changes in the producer price index.

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