Maldives vice president Abdulla Jihad has called for higher taxes on tobacco highlighting the pressing need to stem the rise of smokers in the archipelago.
However, the VP insisted that the tax hike must come at the opportune time.
"I believe that members (lawmakers) will consider it," he said while addressing the High Level Advocacy Forum on Tobacco Control in the Maldives on Tuesday.
Highlighting that passive smokers face health hazards due to the inhalation of second hand smoke, the Vice President said that education and advocacy is important to make the nation smoke free.
VP also hailed the initiative by the WHO as a worthy campaign against tobacco and that we could succeed in making Maldives tobacco free.
The Vice President said that the campaign aimed to bring about a smoke free generation so that future generations would not consume tobacco and that this could be achieved with everyone working together.