High tobacco taxes are initiated by the Australian Government to reducing smoking by the teenagers and low-income people. This was mainly initiated by the government as the reduction in the smoking rates will lead to a healthy country. Moreover, it was done for the youth of Australia. This assignment mainly centres around the raised taxes on tobacco which directly influences the improvement of health and increase revenue. This study deals with the strategies adopted by the government to improve the health of the youth and the low-income people. This assignment revolves around the influential factors for reducing the amount of smoking. It further shades light on how the higher rates of tobacco taxes have benefited the health and extended lives. This project will also deal with the economic impacts of tobacco taxation.
The aim of the project is to evaluate the impact of high tax rates in tobacco in the improvement of health and increase the revenue of the country.
● To understand the impact of tobacco on health improvement
● To understand the impact of higher taxes on tobacco
● To understand the economic impacts of tobacco taxation
It is very important to understand the policies of the Australian government in context to the increased rate of tobacco revenue. This assignment will cater the improvement in health due to the higher rates of tobacco taxation. This project will determine the economic impacts of the tobacco taxation and increase of revenue. It will also cater to the strategies adopted by the government to save the youth of Australia and extend lives. This project will help to understand why the government has taken the potential steps for the improvement of the Australians.
Higher taxes on tobacco influencing the improvement of health and increase revenue
The initial increase in the rates of tobacco had led to the decrease in the amount of tobacco consumption. In regard to other taxes, the public has widely supported and accepted the higher amounts of tobacco taxation. As stated by Chaloupka et al. (2012), currently Australia has the highest price of tobacco which is about A22 per pack of cigarettes which accounts up to US$ 17 and at the same time, it is expected to go up to US$ 40 by 2020. These increased prices have been widely supported by the people of Australia.
Description of tax increase
Australia has decided to implement 12.5 % annual increase in tobacco until 2020. This implementation got unanimous support from the citizens and the political parties. However, the liberal party opposed to their high tax initiative at the beginning but later they adapted to the labour parties proposal. In 2012, the Federal government of Australia has implemented an increase of 25% and executed annual increase of 12.5% by 2013. As commented by Blecher (2015), their current tax proposal is the continuation of the previous tobacco budget. Over the past 20 years, there has been an increase of 340% in the cost of tobacco.
As stated by Callison and Kaestner (2014), The Australian public health Committee has strongly supported the increase in taxation as it has been an effective strategy by the government to decrease the use of tobacco and quit. This strategy of the government has also been supported by the Australian National Preventative taskforce and WHO. According to a survey, people opined that the sudden increase in the tobacco taxation is more impactful than the tobacco control measures. According to a survey in 2013, the National Drug Strategy Household Survey forecasted that 67% supported the increased taxation and in this same survey it was found that 46.9% of people had quit smoking due to the cost factor. As stated by Wilson et al. (2012), the recent surveys entail that the use of tobacco has declined from 23.35 in 1991 to 12.8% in 2013.
Potential health benefits of quitting tobacco
There is a room for potential health benefits and significant health changes for those have quit and those who do not intend to smoke due to the high-cost rates of tobacco. As stated by Jemal (2012), the results of a survey indicate that the increase of the tobacco cost is particularly effective with low-income workers, students, and some black minority ethnic group communities. In a survey conducted in the whole of Australia, it was found that quitting tobacco has farfetched health results for both men and women of all ages. This study initiated that how hazardous tobacco is and almost two-thirds of the population was killed by smoking. As commented by Van Hasselt et al. (2015), to the number of people who had quit smoking, the highest number of benefits was reached. In an index ratio, it was found that those who quitted smoking at the age of 30 avoided almost every risk disease, quitting at 50 induced the risk of smoking-related death and quitting at the age of 60 resulted in at least 3 years of life expectancy.
In a recent study, it was found that the smokers only led the average decade of life compared to the non-smokers. As stated by Bonita et al. (2013), in a recent handbook of the International Agency for Research in Cancer forecasted that the risk disease is lower to the former chain-smokers.
Smoking infects the body in several ways in regard to acute and chronic diseases. Health risks that prevail for smokers are cancer, pancreatitis, psoriasis, cirrhosis and nerve diseases. The decline of heath is bound for people with continuous tobacco intake.
Health problems that can be exempted by quitting tobacco
● Mental health Problems- smoking exacerbates diseases related to the brain and it has been evaluated that those who have quit smoking live a healthy life. It improves quality of life and mental health.
● Diabetes- People with diabetes who had quit smoking have lower death risks and lower risks of organ failure.
● Mouth ulcers - As commented by Maynard et al. (2013), it is evident that mouth ulcers and colds are common to the smokers which usually decrease on quitting tobacco.
● Stroke- There is a marked reduction in stroke risks for people who had quit smoking.
● Heart disease- Smoking reduces cardiovascular diseases among all ages. In a survey, it was found that the quitting at the age of 65 was effective to reduce cardiovascular diseases. However, results have been found that chain smokers who had left smoking are not exempted from heart diseases.
● Lung Cancer- As commented by Hollands et al. (2012), by quitting smoking, the reduction in lung cancer risk can be mitigated.
● Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)- Reducing and cutting of smoking leads to fewer COPD syndromes and better the liver function by 5%.
● Female fertility- Smoking reduces the fertility growth in women and it has been found that non-smokers have higher fertility rates than the smokers.
● Other cancers- the risk of related cancers like throat, mouth, oesophagus, kidney, pancreas, and cervix are observed in the smokers rather than the non-smokers.
● Blindness- Cataract developments are much reduced if consumption of tobacco is decreased.
● Oral health- Smoking usually reduces the risk of oral problems including mouth cancer. The smoker's palate usually disappears due to the less intake of tobacco.
Other benefits of quitting
The other important benefit of quitting tobacco includes more money savings (20 cigarettes per day which accounts up to $ 7500 per year). Financial stress can be exhibited by quitting tobacco. Quitting reduces the further damages to skin and body inducing the lifespan.
Potential impacts on family and income
As commented by McAuley et al. (2012), due to the imposition of the high amount of tobacco taxation, people had left smoking in Australia which in turn had led to a steady income and well to their families.
Impacts on Illicit trade
As stated by Bradford et al. (2013), Australia's geographical location acts a barrier to illicit trade groups. Hence, no products are brought through illicit trade routes. The Australian government has also taken initiatives to protect the trade routes so that no illicit products are brought into the Country.
Tax as a helpful self-control device
High taxation has no wondered reduced the amount of tobacco consumption in Australia. The citizens responded towards the taxation in a responsive and supportive manner. As commented by Shindell et al. (2012), it can be understood on the basis that if the smokers were unresponsive towards the government strategy, then the initiation of the self-control tool was regarded as void. Several studies have initiated that this mechanism has helped the youth and lower income strata.
Factors affecting decline in youth smoking
● Core provisions to reduce supply- The regulation of the Australian government aimed at controlling the tobacco consumption by not supplying them to the children and adolescents. As commented by Nagelhout et al. (2012), prevention of the tobacco sales to minors and educating them about the impacts of smoking helped the citizens a lot.
● Price measures- price is the main component when it comes to the decline in smoking. The imposition of high taxes led to the high pricing of cigarettes. In Australia, the high pricing had led to the reduction of tobacco consumption, especially in the adolescent's group.
● Non-price measures- As commented by Mackenbach (2012), the Australian government wrought out a policy to clean smoke-free environment which had also helped subsequently in the reduction of smoking. Adult-targeted media campaigns were also introduced to make the country free from tobacco. The government also took few regulatory changes like restricting tobacco advertising. Sponsorships and promotion to tobacco were also denied. Restriction to smoking in public and few indoor places have been circulated in Australia over the past 6 years. In the Smoke-Free Environment Act 2000, smoking has been banned NSW commercial 2015 (austlii.edu.au, 2018).
As commented by Adkison et al. (2013), when studying the market for tobacco products, the economists often break down their analysis on preferences. They take individual preferences and investigate how these translate into demand behaviours. Individuals have the knowledge that tobacco is harmful but act rationally at times. Economists also relate tobacco as a paradoxical behaviour of certain individuals who consider acting profoundly with the use of tobacco but end up harming themselves. For example, a smoker smokes nearly 20 packs of cigarette knowing that it is going to harm him or her. This is because of the demand behaviour in relation to the paradoxical behaviour.
● Understanding potential harms and monitoring the impacts- When it comes to the high imposition of tobacco taxes, researchers focus on tobacco control and health improvement measures. As commented by Bhawna (2015), people need to identify the harms and risks caused by smoking and to gain knowledge in that area. Miniaturization of the impacts by the Australian government is important and this can be understood by the population surveys with the focus on high-risk groups.
● Approaches to engaging with disadvantages communities- As the main aim of Australia is to put an end to the tobacco game, deliberate discussions with the disadvantageous communities are a must. This will help to determine other governmental strategies like campaigns, regulatory approaches and support programmes in context to the tobacco taxation.
● Spending the revenue- As stated by O'connor (2012),
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