Smokers to Be Hit by Higher Insurance Costs

One of Sweden's biggest insurance companies says it is going to charge smokers extra for their insurance premiums as of next week. Skandia say that that smokers face greater health risks than non-smokers, and say they will raise premiums for new customers that smoke every day by between 25 - 50%. The extra funds they raise through the hiked premiums will go to non-smokers, they say, who will eventually see their insurance payments fall.

Skandia say they are also to start a new anti-smoking campaigns in workplaces and schools.

Writing in the Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, the company claims that 3.7 million days of sick leave are caused by smoking related illnesses in Sweden annually, and that smokers live on average 5 - 10 years less than their non-smoking friends.