Solomon Tobacco has slapped smokers with a 50 per cent price hike on its popular Pallmall Blue cigarette effective as of yesterday.
The sudden price increase, which caught smokers by surprise, saw a single packet cigarette now selling at 30 Solomon Island dollars or over 4 US dollars from the previous 20 Solomons dollar at retail shops.
A single roll has shot up from a dollar to 2 Solomon Islands dollar.
The Solomon Star reports that the Corporate and Regulatory Affairs manager, Lilly Lomulo, says the price increase was brought about by increasing production costs, which the company can no longer absorb.
Mrs Lomulo says for the past four years, the company has been absorbing the increase costs in raw materials and tariffs.
She says the company can no longer do this, therefore decided to take this measure to meet company targets as a business entity.
This decision has already had an impact on customers who have to purchase a single roll of cigarette for 2 Solomon Islands dollars on the streets.
A carton of Pallmall blue has increased from 694 US dollars or 5,000 Solomon Island dollars to 8,000 Solomon Islands dollars or 1,111 US dollars.