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Call for taxation on sugar-sweetened drinks

Shayal Devi
Saturday, July 26, 2014

SOME form of taxation should be placed on sugar-sweetened beverages, says Watesoni Nata Jr, the manager for Consumer Council of Fiji's alternate dispute resolution and consumer advisory division.

Speaking during a workshop on controlling marketing of sugar-sweetened beverages and unhealthy foods to children at Sea Breeze Hotel in Lautoka yesterday, Mr Nata Jr said some Pacific island countries had already implemented some taxes on these products.

"These include Nauru and French Polynesia," he said.

He said the affordability and availability of sugar-sweetened beverages was one of the major causes of non-communicable diseases in children.

"Sugar-sweetened beverages are abundant. They come in an assorted range, they are high in calories and appeal to our taste for sweetness.

"Another important factor for considering sugar sweetened beverage taxes is medical reasons. Intake of excess sugar doesn't just affect one portion of society but everyone."

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