The price of cigarettes has officially gone up.
Anthony Phillip, Chairman of the West Indies Tobacco Company (WITCO), said this “is as a direct result of the excise increase on cigarettes.”
In the budget reading last month, Finance Minister Colm Imbert announced that the government would raise excise duties on locally manufactured tobacco products by 20 per cent.
Phillip told GML that “Normally price increases are approved by the board of directors, and in this case we had a price increase.”
However, he pointed out that WITCO has no control on how much retailers would charge for the cigarettes. He said that is why it recently released a “suggested retail price” advertisement in the media.
According to Phillip, retailers have been raising their prices in response to excise increases for a long time. But, he said there is a recommended price at which retailers should by from the distributors, and also a price from which the distributors buy from the company.