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Public Event

Fiscal Policies for Health: Taxing Tobacco, Alcohol, and Sugary Beverages

Friday, April 12, 2019 - 11:00am to 12:30pm


Amir Aman Hagos, Minister of Health, Ethiopia

Mauricio Cárdenas, Former Minister of Finance and Public Credit, Colombia and Distinguished Visiting Fellow, Center for Global Development

Victoria Perry, Deputy Director, Fiscal Affairs Department, International Monetary Fund

Masood Ahmed, President, Center for Global Development


Amanda Glassman, Chief Operating Officer and Senior Fellow, Center for Global Development


More than ten million deaths each year are associated with consuming just three products: tobacco, alcohol, and sugary beverages. Most of these deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. We know that taxes are a cost-effective way to reduce consumption, save lives, and raise domestic revenues. Yet taxes on these harmful products are still low in most countries. Raising the prices of these products by 50 percent could avert an estimated 50 million premature deaths worldwide and raise $20 trillion in new revenues over the next 50 years.

What is standing in the way? How can developing country governments implement excise taxes in a way to maximize revenue intake and health outcomes? What are the implications for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals in terms of improving health and domestic revenue mobilization? Join us at CGD to hear this expert panel discuss the policy and real-world implications of fiscal policies that address harms through taxation.

Read the report of the Task Force on Fiscal Policy for Health, co-chaired by Michael R. Bloomberg and CGD Board Chair Lawrence H. Summers, here.

Related Experts

Photo of Amanda Glassman
Executive Vice President of CGD, CEO of CGD Europe, and Senior Fellow
Photo of Masood Ahmed

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