A research published by The Quit Group indicates that many more smokers have been trying to quit since April’s increase in taxes on tobacco. Figures indicate that the proportion of New Zealanders trying to stop smoking has increased by 93%.

In the month after the tax increase, 4,000 people registered with Quitline, a telephone service that offers individuals support in attempts to quit smoking. The report indicates that the number of callers has almost doubled, compared to the same period in 2009. Over 25% of callers had not tried to quit smoking in the last year. Above 66% reported the tax increase as one of the factors pushing them to quit.

Paula Snowden, The Quit Group’s Chief Executive, is pleased with the figures and applauds the Government’s plans to further supplement the tax raises. “The majority of smokers wish they had never begun smoking and our survey shows that an increase in tobacco prices provides the trigger some smokers need to begin their quitting journey”.

She emphasised the importance of continuing work, however, and is currently involved in backing a proposal that seeks to make tobacco less visually stimulating. The proposal would ban the display of tobacco products and mandate the use of plain packaging on all tobacco products.

Leave a Reply