§ Mr. Arthur Lewis
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether as a means of reducing smoking and so saving on the National Health spending budget, he will, in his forthcoming Budget, make it obligatory for all cigarette packets, in addition to the health warning, to have a clearly stated tax element charge printed on them.
§ Mr. Geoffrey Finsberg
There would be practical difficulties in doing what the hon. Member proposes, in view of the time required for manufacturers and importers to make changes to their packaging. Furthermore, as the tobacco industry has itself given extensive publicity to the tax element in the price of cigarettes, there must be considerable doubt as to whether drawing further attention to this would have the effect suggested by the hon. Member.