The cost of a single cigarette is about to reach nearly $2 as New Zealand's smokefree deadline looms.
The latest rise in a series of annual tax-based price increases on cigarettes comes into effect on New Year's Day meaning a pack of 25 cigarettes will cost more than $40. Throughout 2018, the price of a pack has hovered around $38, according to Statistics NZ.
Hāpai Te Hauroa Māori Public Health is calling on the Government to use more of that tax raised on stopping those who still can't kick the habit.
The Government has set a goal of having fewer than 5 per cent of New Zealanders smoking by 2025. According to Smokefree New Zealand, about 16 per cent of Kiwis currently smoke.