Lebanon Taxes Cigarettes and Booze

The proposed amendments to the smoking ban in Lebanon have fallen in parliament. The ratifications proposed by Antoine Zahra, Samer Saadeh and Nadim el Gemayel were not even accepted by their own parliamentary blocks. The restaurant syndicate has lost – and our lungs have won. (Details – in arabic).

Sami el Gemayel’s argument was exactly the same one I told to MP Samer Saadeh (here). You cannot verify which restaurants have more than 60% of their income from tobacco-related products, which makes any ratification prone for serious corruption.

As a step further, the government is proposing tax increases on tobacco and alcohol. Some people are, of course, not pleased with that. Such as MP Samer Saadeh.

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