NASR SUGAR Diabetes Beverages SSB
The Federal Government is being asked to apply the proceeds from the SBB Tax to health projects.

FG Urged to Define Beverages Tax

Once more, health sector stakeholders are urging the federal government to define the N10 per litre excise tax on all non-alcoholic, carbonated, and sweetened beverages as contained in the 2021 Finance Act.

The stakeholders, at a media roundtable organised by the National Action on Sugar Reduction (NASR) and Gatefield in Abuja, further highlighted the significance of healthy food policies, particularly the Sugar-Sweetened Beverage (SSB) tax, which was recently introduced by the government.

Gatefield pro-health journalism fellow, Rachel Abujah, said Nigeria currently lacked an efficient food policy, adding that the government should define the tax and earmark it for health purposes.

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Abujah also tasked the government to ensure that the funds from the tax are used appropriately, as well as earmarked to improve public health.

Also, speaking at the event, Advocacy Specialist at Gatefield, Shirley Ewang, stressed the need to intensify advocacy for the sustenance and increase of the sugar tax in Nigeria, lamenting that it was rather unfortunate that the beverage industry is currently pushing back on the tax and calling for its removal.

However, a representative from Global Health Advocacy Incubator, Joy Amafah, highlighted the rise of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in the country and the importance of healthy food policies in reducing and preventing them.

She emphasised that globally, taxation was an effective method for reducing the consumption of unhealthy foods, pointing out that sugar tax had already been implemented in the Americas, Mexico, and South Africa, while research shows that it has contributed to a decrease in consumption of unhealthy foods.