New Zealand is really, really trying to become a smoke free country. Tax increases have caused many to abandon smoking altogether just to save money. And who can blame them when the tax increases that they have seen have caused the costs of cigarettes to reach nearly 40 percent in increase? To make things even more dismal for smokers in that country, it is projected that cigarette packs will cost roughly fifteen US dollars by the time 2016 rolls around. On top of that, new laws are rolling out that will require cigarette vendors to sell cigarettes under the counter, instead of relying on visible displays.
The fact is that the tax hikes and laws against displaying cigarettes are trends that are starting to show their faces here in the US. It makes one wonder whether or not the trends we are seeing in New Zealand are an indication of the direction we could be headed in the US. On top of the tax increases, with big tobacco companies slowly showing a willingness to try tobacco free nicotine products, actual smoking may become a thing of great rarity in the country.
The fact is that smoking all across the world is starting to slow down. New Zealand could be setting a very influential precedent if their plan works out.