Sin Tax In Effect: Soda and Beer Prices Going Up 25 Cents Per Bottle On Monday

Tomorrow, April first may be all fool's day - but, more importantly, it's also tax day! That's because its the first day of the fiscal year - a year in which government has to raise an additional 80 million dollars in taxes. 28 million dollars of that will come from "sin taxes" on soft drinks, beer and stout, and increased taxes on cement, and fuel.

And, so how much will that increase the cost of your favorite soft drink or beer? Well, for locally produced beverages from Bowen and Bowen, the cost of soft drink or beer will go up about 4 dollars per crate. That works out to an increase in the retail price of about 25 cents per bottle of beer or soft drink. Now, this may vary, due to the difference in various bottle sizes, but a senior company executive told us that 25 cents per bottle is about the average increase. He also told us that one or two products - which he didn't name - will not increase.

There's a great deal of secrecy involving the prices since the competition against imported beers and soft drinks is so fierce. There's also been a lot of stockpiling, with bars, restaurants and stores buying huge quantities of Belikin beer and soft drinks at the lower price - so that they can come up more than just a few cents when the price change goes into effect on Monday.

As for rum...we told you earlier in the week that the increase is expected to be between 33% and 50%, meaning somewhere between a three to five dollar increase on a quart. But, again, at this point, that has not been confirmed since all local rum producers are keeping their prices secret until next week.

As for the increased tax on fuel, those prices are also expected to go into effect at midnight tonight, but as this point, government hasn't sent the new figures to service stations.

Channel 7