Tobacconists and petrol station owners protest at tobacco price rise

Tobacconists and petrol station owners are to take action against the increase in tobacco tax proposed in the five-party coalition austerity package.

The tax increase will see a packet of cigarettes rise in price by 35 euro cents and rolling tobacco by 60 euro cents. The five-party coalition says this will bring in €371m.
The increase is in addition to the rise in value-added tax (btw) from 19% to 21% due in October.
Tobacconists and petrol station owners say this will be disasterous for their businesses, especially in areas bordering on Belgium and Germany where tobacco products are much cheaper.
They want the tax rise lowered to 15 euro cents for a packet of cigarettes and 25 euro cents for rolling tobacco.
The first protest meetings take place in Hengelo, Venlo and Bergen op Zoom on Monday evening.