Sri Lanka nabbed 169 online tobacco, alcohol promoters – state finmin 

- economynext.com

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka has nabbed 169 online promoters of tobacco and alcohol in the first eight months of this year with an aim to discourage smoking and drinking, State Finance Minister Ranjith Siyambalapitiya said, though government officials say the government has to depend on taxes from both tobacco and alcohol.

The cyber crime division of the island nation’s Excise Department has carried out the investigations, the minister said.

Siyambalapitiya in a statement said the government is in the process of discouraging the usage of tobacco and alcohol and it has started a counseling service for those who are addicted.

However, government officials say though successive government have said they will discourage the usage of tobacco and alcohol, they have not implemented the measures as they help to boost tax revenue.

“No government is ready to totally discourage smoking and drinking because it will hit their coffers,” a senior government official told EconomyNext asking not to be named. (Cololmbo/Sept21/2022)

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