Sales of cigarettes in Belgium fell by 6.7% during 2007. The big fall in sales of cigarettes and other tobacco product has meant that the Belgian treasury raised 150 million less in tobacco excise duty than expected last year. The tobacco companies claim that the fall in sales has come about as a result of the smoking ban in restaurants and at places of work.
The ban came into force at the beginning of last year and means that smoking is only allowed in designated smoking rooms.The ban doesn't affect pubs and bars. Another reason cited for the fall in sales is the increased excise duty on tobacco products that has served to sharply increase the price of a packet of cigarettes.