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UK consultation to be held on tobacco industry ‘levy’

| December 4, 2014

The UK Treasury is to launch a consultation on a potential levy on the tobacco industry, according to a story by Jill Treanor for The Guardian.

Although the Chancellor, George Osborne, did not mention the consultation during his autumn statement to MPs on Wednesday, it was included in documents released alongside the statement.

‘Smoking imposes costs on society, and the government believes it is therefore fair to ask the tobacco industry to make a greater contribution,’ Treanor quoted the Treasury as saying.

‘The government will shortly launch a consultation on introducing a levy on tobacco manufacturers and importers.’

Deborah Arnott, the chief executive of Ash, described the announcement of the consultation as “almost like Christmas come early”.

In another Guardian story in September, the UK’s tobacco industry was said to have reacted with ‘fury’ to a plan by the opposition Labour Party leader, Ed Miliband, to impose an additional tax on Britain’s tobacco companies to help pay for National Health Service spending.

Miliband told delegates at the annual party conference in Manchester that it was fair to impose additional costs on an industry that makes “soaring profits on the back of ill health”.

The UK is due to hold a general election on May 7 next year.

Kim Jong Un orders officials to smoke domestic cigarettes

| December 4, 2014
True patriots

True patriots

Calling foreign cigarettes unpatriotic, North Korean leader and smoker Kim Jong Un ordered senior officials to smoke only domestic cigarettes, reports the International Business Times.

It is unclear whether the directive applies also to counterfeit cigarettes made in North Korea with foreign labels.

Earlier this year, a report by the Washington, DC-based Committee for Human Rights in North Korea said that the isolated country manufacturers millions of cartons of cigarettes bearing foreign labels and ships them worldwide to raise hard currency.

‘No evidence for tobacco’s plain packaging position’

| December 4, 2014

Researchers from the University of Bath, in the United Kingdom, found no independent evidence supporting the tobacco industry’s arguments against plain packaging, reports the Jersey Evening Post.

In a study released on Dec. 3, the researcher reviewed 74 pieces of evidence cited by tobacco companies to argue that plain packaging would have negative effects on the economy and fuel illicit trade.

The researchers found that there were no independent, peer-reviewed reports supporting the industry position and that 47 percent of the pieces of evidence reviewed came from reports commissioned by the industry itself or from third parties with financial connections to the industry.

More than two-thirds of the evidence supplied by tobacco companies was just opinion, according to the researchers. It was provided by business or retail organizations with tobacco company members, trade unions with tobacco company employees, and 51 MPs opposed to plain packaging, seven of whom have allegedly accepted industry hospitality.



E-liquids not medicine, says German court

| December 4, 2014

A German court has ruled that the liquids contained in e-cigarettes aren’t medicinal products and can be sold freely, reports the Associated Press

The Federal Administrative Court delivered its verdict Thursday in a case involving a woman who ran an e-cigarette shop in Wuppertal.

City authorities barred her in 2012 from selling liquids containing nicotine in various strengths on the ground that they were pharmaceutical products that weren’t licensed as such and therefore couldn’t be marketed. A lower court ruling went against the plaintiff.

PMI invests in Philippine leaf

| December 3, 2014

philippines-farmPhilip Morris Fortune Tobacco Co. (PMFTC), a subsidiary of Philip Morris International, will invest more than 50 million in Virginia tobacco production on Mindanao, Philippines, over the next five to six years, according to local press reports.

“We’re starting up a whole new operation down there because it’s quite a unique project that we got, it’s only the second place in the world where we grow tobacco twice a year,” PMFTC president Paul Riley said.

Riley said the investment reflects PMFTC’s long-term commitment to the Philippines.

“We’re not going away so we have to invest in the future,” he said.


Neotechnik moves

| December 3, 2014

After 95 years in Bielefeld, Germany, Neotechnik is moving to Telgte-Westbevern.

As of Jan. 1, 2015, the company’s contact details will be:

Lengericher Str. 22
48291 Telgte-Westbevern
Telephone +49 (0)2504/9800-600
Fax: +49 (0)2504/9800-601

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