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To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what assessment he has made of the effect of each tobacco control measure introduced in the last decade on small businesses; and whether those effects were in line with the assessment as set out in the original impact assessment.
The Department assesses the impact of all proposed measures before laying legislation using standard government methodology. These assessments are set out in Impact Assessments which are scrutinised by the Regulatory Policy Committee before publication alongside the Statutory Instrument. Impact Assessments specifically look at the impacts on small and micro businesses. A number of the tobacco measures contain commitments to further review the impact of the legislation within five years of them coming into force.
The Department assesses the impact of tobacco control measures on an ongoing basis as it develops policy and considers new measures. In September 2013, the Department published An Audit of the impact of the Department of Health’s Regulations upon business. A copy of the report is attached. The Audit report covered all regulations for which the Department has responsibility believed to have a potential cost to business, including those relating to tobacco control. As advised in the report, there is a robust cost-benefit case for the tobacco control regulations considered and experience shows that initiatives to reduce smoking prevalence work best in combination, with cumulative effects over time.