Roundtable – Excises on tobacco products: An efficient tool for decrease of smoking prevalence held in Zagreb

Zagreb, Croatia - October 12, 2018

On October 12, 2018, research team of the Faculty of Economics, University of Split organised Roundtable „Excises on tobacco products: An efficient tool for decrease of smoking prevalence“. Roundtable has been organised with an aim to present results of the conducted research on the effects of tobacco taxation policy in the Republic of Croatia. It was moderated by tax expert, dr. sc Ljerka Markota.

In the opening speech, Ms. Zeljana Aljinovic Barac (project manager for Croatia) adressed the audience stressing importance of the open dialogue as a tool for finding the most effective taxation treatment of the tobacco products since their consumption is not only a health, but the economic issue. Project research team – dr. sc. Paško Burnać, prof. dr. sc. Andrijana Rogošić, dr. sc. Slavko Šodan and dr. sc. Tina Vuko presented results of the performed research showing that taxation and the excise policy in particular, could be used as a very efficient tool for both reduction of smoking prevalence and increase of fiscal revenues. Within a discussion that followed presentation of the research results, representatives of all participating stakeholders – Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Science and Education, Ministry of Tourism, tax experts and students, concluded that increase of excises would result in higher prices of cigarettes, making them less affordable, especially for vulnerable population of youth. Joint efforts of all interested stakeholders could in a long term result in efficient tobacco taxation and effective tobacco control policy including development of strategic framework for the reduction of damage resulting from tobacco consumption in Republic of Croatia.

Roundtable was organised within the international research project Accelerating Progress on Effective Tobacco Tax Policies in Low and Middle- Income Countries, aiming to establish dialogue between researchers and policy makers on the most efficient taxation policy, as an important aspect of creation of national tobacco control policy. Project is funded by the University of Illinois, Chicago, as the main partner of Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco use. Regional project coordinator is the Institute of Economic Sciences from Belgrade. Project is being conducted in all Western Balkan countries.