stluciatimes, caribbean, caribbeannews, stlucia, saintlucia, stlucianews, saintlucianews, stluciatimesnews, saintluciatimes, stlucianewsonline, saintlucianewsonline, st lucia news online, stlucia news online, loop news, loopnewsbarbados

spot_img

WHO Calls For Increased Taxes On Alcohol, Sugary Sweetened Beverages

spot_img

The World Health Organization (WHO) has released new data that show a low global rate of taxes being applied to unhealthy products such as alcohol and sugary sweetened beverages (SSBs).

The findings highlight that the majority of countries are not using taxes to incentivize healthier behaviours.

To help support countries WHO is also releasing a technical manual on alcohol tax policy and administration.

Globally 2.6 million people die from drinking alcohol every year and over 8 million from an unhealthy diet, implementing tax on alcohol and SSBs will reduce these deaths.

Half of all countries taxing SSBs are also taxing water, which is not recommended by WHO.

Although 108 countries are taxing some sort of sugar-sweetened beverage, globally, on average excise tax, a tax designated for a specified consumer product, represents just 6.6% of the price of soda.

At least 148 countries have applied excise taxes to alcoholic beverages at the national level. However, wine is exempted from excise taxes in at least 22 countries, most of which are in the European Region.

Globally, on average, the excise tax share in the price of the most sold brand of beer is 17.2%. For the most sold brand of the most sold spirits type, it is 26.5%.

A 2017 study shows that taxes that increase alcohol prices by 50% would help avert over 21 million deaths over 50 years and generate nearly US$17 trillion in additional revenues.

This is equivalent to the total government revenue of eight of the world’s largest economies in one year.

“Taxing unhealthy products creates healthier populations. It has a positive ripple effect across society – less disease and debilitation and revenue for governments to provide public services. In the case of alcohol, taxes also help prevent violence and road traffic injuries,” said Dr Rűdiger Krech, Director, Health Promotion, World Health Organization.

Countries like Lithuania, that increased alcohol tax in 2017 to drive down consumption have decreased deaths from alcohol related diseases.

Lithuania increased alcohol tax revenue from 234 million euros in 2016 to 323 million euros in 2018 and saw alcohol-related deaths drop from 23.4 per 100 000 people in 2016 to 18.1 per 100 000 people in 2018.

Research shows that taxing alcohol and SSBs helps cut down use of these products and gives companies a reason to make healthier products.

While at the same time tax on these products help prevent injuries and noncommunicable diseases such as cancers, diabetes and heart diseases.

A recent Gallup Poll, conducted in collaboration with WHO and Bloomberg Philanthropies, found that the majority of people surveyed across all countries supported increasing taxes on unhealthy products such as alcohol and SBBs.

WHO recommends that excise tax should apply to all SSBs and alcoholic beverages.

The release of the alcohol tax manual today follows a suite of already existing tax manuals including on tobacco and sugar sweetened beverages.

SOURCE: Pan American Health Organization/SLT

Any third-party or user posts, comments, replies, and third-party entries published on the St. Lucia Times website (https://stluciatimes.com) in no way convey the thoughts, sentiments or intents of St. Lucia Times, the author of any said article or post, the website, or the business. St. Lucia Times is not responsible or liable for, and does not endorse, any comments or replies posted by users and third parties, and especially the content therein and whether it is accurate. St. Lucia Times reserves the right to remove, screen, edit, or reinstate content posted by third parties on this website or any other online platform owned by St. Lucia Times (this includes the said user posts, comments, replies, and third-party entries) at our sole discretion for any reason or no reason, and without notice to you, or any user. For example, we may remove a comment or reply if we believe it violates any part of the St. Lucia Criminal Code, particularly section 313 which pertains to the offence of Libel. Except as required by law, we have no obligation to retain or provide you with copies of any content you as a user may post, or any other post or reply made by any third-party on this website or any other online platform owned by St. Lucia Times. All third-parties and users agree that this is a public forum, and we do not guarantee any confidentiality with respect to any content you as a user may post, or any other post or reply made by any third-party on this website. Any posts made and information disclosed by you is at your own risk.

5 COMMENTS

  1. You cannot tax people into good health, or security, for that matter. However, you can educate, instead of frustrating us.

  2. @Common Sense, actually you can tax unhealthy foods. You think people don’t know sugary and junk foods are not good for their health ?

  3. We’re so broken that might just turn into hey lets just spend our money on rum and we’ll figure out the rest but I still agree with the sentiment. Tax the shit that will kill us to help fund what might / can save us. lets say something like health care maybe…

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

TRENDING

Subscribe to our St. Lucia Times Newsletter

Get our headlines emailed to you every day.

Share via
Send this to a friend