Revision of the EU Tobacco Tax Directive
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Smoke Free Partnership, Brussels, Belgium
Publication date: 2022-07-05
Tob. Prev. Cessation 2022;8(Supplement):A14
In 2018, the European Commission started a process of evaluating the current Tobacco Tax Directive 2011/64/EU (TTD). The Commission published its report on the TTD, together with an external study in 2020. The report highlights the reduced effectiveness of the TTD. In 2020, the Council adopted its conclusions, inviting the Commission to draft a legislative proposal highlighting that consumption of tobacco products remains one of the greatest avoidable and preventable health risks.

We aim to raise awareness of the target audience about the aim and key objectives of the TTD revision and update on the current status of the file, and to discuss practical steps for target audience to engage and support the advocacy and communication campaign on the revision of TTD.

SFP together with a group of experts developed a position paper on EU tobacco taxes that presents a comprehensive policy proposal based on the most recent economic data. The recommendations aim to fill in the gaps and loopholes of the current Directive.

The revision of the TTD should explicitly recognize that, and in addition to improving the functioning of the Internal Market, EU tax legislation should strive to achieve the highest possible level of health protection and contribute to achieving Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan 2040 target. The EU TTD should also aim to achieve upwards convergence of taxes and prices of tobacco products in the EU internal market by decreasing the price differentials between Member States.

The EU TTD should: 1) ensure a consistent increase in taxes across the EU and all product categories aiming to decrease the difference in prices, 2) achieve upwards convergence of taxes on all tobacco products with those of cigarettes and roll-your-own, and 3) introduce a tax category for raw tobacco and relevant intermediate products for monitoring.