OTRU Events

Does Increasing Tobacco Tax increase Contraband? Debunking the Taxation and Contraband Tobacco Myth

Tuesday, May 12, 2015 | 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM (EST)
Language: English | Format: 60-minutes (online)

It is frequently claimed that tobacco taxes cause smuggling, but does increasing tobacco tax necessarily increase contraband? To debunk the myth that taxation leads to contraband tobacco, the speakers will discuss findings from the literature, present data on Ontario trends in tobacco taxes, consumption, prevalence and contraband, compare tax and price data in Canada, and critically review an earlier report from the Fraser Institute.

This webinar will provide evidence to address the following questions:

  • What is the magnitude of the contraband cigarette problem?
  • Does increasing tobacco taxes necessarily lead to an increase in contraband tobacco?
  • What does recent history tell us about the impact of taxation on tobacco products in Ontario?



Dr. Robert Schwartz, OTRU Executive Director, Associate Professor, University of Toronto
Dr. Bo Zhang, OTRU Research Officer

Learning Objectives

Participants will:

  • Gain an understanding of the factors that impact the use of contraband tobacco
  • Gain an understanding of the association between tobacco taxation and contraband in Ontario


Target Audience

This webinar will be of interest to public health practitioners and policy makers working in comprehensive tobacco control.

REGISTER for this webinar

This webinar is presented by the Program Training & Consultation Centre in collaboration with the Ontario Tobacco Research Unit.