Budget 2011: Tobacco and alcohol duties increase

23 March 2011

The previously announced alcohol duty rise will go ahead with the tax increasing by 2% above inflation as of midnight on Sunday.

The hike was originally put in place by the previous government.

Meanwhile, tobacco duty rates will also rise by 2% above inflation, effective as of 6pm tonight.

Chancellor George Osborne also pledged to reform the tobacco duty regime to narrow the gap between the lower-cost brands and the others.

One step will be to increase duty on hand-rolling tobacco by a further 10%.

In addition, from 1 October 2011, the government will introduce an additional duty on high-strength beers, and a reduced rate of duty on lower-strength beers to encourage their production and consumption.

The government said this "will reduce the health and social harms resulting from problem drinking, and is designed to avoid unfairly penalising responsible drinkers".

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