9 Jun 2010

Tobacco price not seen as stopping smoking

9:01 am on 9 June 2010

The editor of the Maori Health Review is backing up Treasury's contention that putting up the price of tobacco won't stop people smoking.

Official papers show Treasury isn't convinced of the worth of a recent price increase due to a higher excise - or those to follow.

Dr Matire Harwood says a recent study of smoking cessation in the United States found low-income Latino and African American people were more likely to take up smoking, and found it harder to give up, when they were under financial strain.

Maori and Pacific people were also likely to be under financial stress, but rates of smoking or tobacco usage would not reduce.

However, Dr Harwood told Waatea News that higher tobacco prices may discourage some teens from starting smoking and they can help people who have access to quality cessation treatment.