Taxes on store-bought cigarettes and alcohol going up
Imperial Tobacco calls tax increase 'irresponsible, short-sighted political cash grab'
Quebecers will have to pay more for some of their favourite indulgences under the province’s new budget.
Smokers face yet another increase in the price of cigarettes just months after a hike in federal taxes on tobacco.
Starting tomorrow, they will pay an extra 50 cents per pack in provincial taxes, or $4 a carton.
The tax increase was announced in the new provincial budget unveiled by the Liberal government Wednesday.
The measure is expected to bring in $90 million in extra revenue this year and $120 million in 2015.
Imperial Tobacco was quick to criticize the tax increase.
"Given the availability of cheap illegal products, raising tobacco taxes is an irresponsible, short-sighted political cash grab decision by the government of Québec," the company said via press release.
Alcohol taxes to be standardized
The government also announced that taxes on alcoholic beverages will switch August 1 from a varied structure based on the type of alcohol and where it’s consumed (at home, at a bar, or in a restaurant) to a standardized tax on each product.
Beer, wine and spirits purchased for home consumption are currently taxed at a lower rate than if they were bought for consumption in a bar or restaurant.
That will switch to one tax rate on each, no matter where they are consumed.
Beer will be taxed at 63 cents a litre and wine and spirits will be taxed at a standard $1.40 per litre.
The switch to a standardized tax will represent a 13 cents per litre increase in taxes on beer bought for home consumption, or around five cents more per bottle.
The tax on a bottle of wine bought for home consumption will go up 24 cents.
The tax on beer bought in a bar or restaurant will decrease by 19 cents per litre while the tax on wine or spirits bought in a bar or restaurant will decrease by $1.07 per litre.
The standardized taxes are expected to net the Quebec government $36 million more in 2014 and an additional $55 million in 2015.