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The price of a packet of cigarettes should go up to €20 by 2025 to protect youngsters from becoming hooked on smoking, the Irish Heart Foundation said yesterday.

Such a hike would add almost 50% to the current €13.50 price for most brands but is needed to protect young people from nicotine addiction, the group has claimed. The IHF is also urging the Government to introduce a new tax on electronic cigarettes and vaping liquids in next week’s Budget.