Meeting to Develop a Standardized Tax Share Indicator for Alcoholic and Sugar-Sweetened Beverages (Washington, D.C., 24-25 July 2018)
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[Executive summary]. Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are a major driver of morbidity and mortality in the Region of the Americas. They represent a major public health challenge that undermines social and economic development. The WHO Global Action Plan for Prevention and Control of Noncommunicable Diseases 2013-2020, endorsed by the 66th World Health Assembly, provides a road map and a menu of policy options. It recognizes implementing taxes on unhealthy products associated with NCDs—namely tobacco, alcoholic beverages, and sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs)—as one of the most cost-effective regulatory policies to prevent NCDs. Although, the World Health Organization (WHO) does calculate and publish biennially a standardized and comparable indicator on tobacco taxation for all Member States, it does not count with comparable measurements of taxation on alcoholic beverages and SSBs. Such measurements are necessary to monitor tax policies, analyze trends and establish best practices in using taxation for NCD prevention. Since 2016, the Department of Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health (NMH) of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) has worked towards addressing the gap measuring progress on alcoholic beverages and SSBs taxation in the Americas. NMH collected country-level information on prices as well as tax legislation and developed a methodology for calculating a tax share indicator. This indicator, estimating the share of total and excise taxes in the price of alcoholic beverages and SSBs, was calculated for ten countries. In order to receive feedbacks on its proposed methodology, discuss the progress and challenges in monitoring and evaluating taxation policies, and establish a roadmap to periodically collect tax legislation and prices and calculate the tax share for alcoholic beverages and SSBs in the Americas, NMH convened researchers and ministries of finance personnel for a two-day meeting in July 2018, in Washington D.C. The participants provided inputs on how to strengthen the proposed tax share indicator to adequately capture the intricacies, unique characteristics, and regional consumption patterns of these products. These valuable inputs will help to improve the methodology and facilitate future efforts to develop a standardized and comparable tax share indicator for alcoholic beverages and SSBs.
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Pan American Health Organization. Meeting to Develop a Standardized Tax Share Indicator for Alcoholic and Sugar-Sweetened Beverages. (Washington, D.C., 24-25 July, 2018) Washington, D.C.: PAHO; 2019.
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