In most Asia-Pacific countries, tobacco pricing is subject to specific excise taxes, whereas ad valorem taxes are less common.
In an increasing number of cases, specific excise as well as ad valorem taxes (mixed excise) are levied (Table 1).
An estimated 680 million smokers, more than half of the world’s smoking-addicted population, resides in the Asia-Pacific region (incl. Studies by the World Health Organization (WHO) suggest that 80% of the world’s smokers live in low-income and middle-income countries and that more than 80% of those dying from lung cancer by 2030 will be from those countries .
Low and middle-income countries, including those in the Asia-Pacific region, are comparatively more affected by cigarette addiction than other countries.
In recent years, mixed excise taxation has been the preferred form of taxation in Europe and has gained popularity in Africa and Southeast Asia, while countries in the Western Pacific maintain a preference for specific excise tax only .
Global tobacco consumption and taxation policies have been strongly influenced by the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC).
The framework went into effect in 2005 and aims at the reduction of global tobacco use through price (tax) and non-price related measures as well as efforts to curb illicit tobacco trade.
Mechanisms for scientific and technical cooperation and exchange of information assist participating parties to address tobacco control issues more effectively than previous global WHO tobacco control initiatives .