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Average price of cigarette pack could rise to HUF 1,600 by April

The average price of a pack of cigarettes in Hungary could rise from HUF 1,400 to HUF 1,600 by next April because of excise tax increases, conservative daily Magyar Nemzet reports.

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A bill submitted by the government to lawmakers would raise the excise tax on cigarettes by 7.3% from next January and by another 4.8% from April, State Secretary for Tax Affairs Norbert Izer told the paper.

He added that the tax rise is "unavoidable" to comply with European Union directives. The bill would raise the excise tax on cigarettes to to 23% of the retail sales price, rising to HUF 37,300 per 1,000 cigarettes from January 1. From April 1, the tax would increase to HUF 39,300 for 1,000 cigarettes.