ISLAMABAD – The federal government has proposed an increase in the prices of E-cigarettes in Budget 2017-18.

The government has also proposed an increase in excise duty on other cigarettes.

Pakistan is one of the countries where cigarette consumption is increasing with the passage of every year as according to WHO data of 2014, every adult consumes 510 cigarettes on average every year which is alarming.

Earlier this month, Minister for National Health Services Saira Afzal Tarar had suggested increasing Federal Excise Duty (FED) on lower slab of all brands of cigarettes to Rs 44 per pack of 20 cigarettes in 2017-18 budget, in a bid to reduce tobacco consumption, as tobacco is a cause of thousands of deaths (approximately 108,800) annually in Pakistan.

On Friday, Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar presented the fifth budget of the incumbent PML-N government with total outlay of Rs 4.8 trillion.

Ishaq Dar had announced 10 per cent increase in the salaries of federal government employees and pensioners in budget 2016-17.

He had said that 10pc ad-hoc relief allowance on running basic pay will be allowed to all the federal government employees with effect from July 1, 2016.

Similarly, he had announced 10 percent increase in net pension to all pensioners of federal government with effect from July 1. A 25pc raise in net pension to all pensioners of federal government above the age of 85 years will also be in effect from July 1.