Just 127 retail tobacco sales concessions were awarded in Hungary in the latest government tender, which comprised 992 in all, according to an MTI story quoting the Vilaggazdasag daily.
The National Tobacco sales Non-profit company (NDN) said 567 valid applications had been submitted in respect of the tender, the fourth such tender called since Hungary introduced a state monopoly on retail tobacco sales last year.
The successful stores are required to sign 20-year concession contracts by April 11.
Data from the tax office show 5,922 shops have a customs license for tobacco sales at present.
Vilaggazdasag said a fifth tender was likely to be called for the remaining concessions, mostly for tobacco sales in villages, where business prospects are limited by small populations.
Children in a Nepalese village are making money from tobacco and liquor—but they’re not selling it, according to a story in The Himalayan Times.
Just the opposite, in fact, because the children, from ward number four of Laxmi Nagar Village Development Committee (VDC) in Doti, have started a campaign to make their village liquor- and smoke-free.
They have initiated a scheme whereby if anyone is found smoking or consuming alcohol he or she is fined NPR10.
To date, 1,750 violations have been recorded; so NPR17,500 has been deposited in the children’s fund.
However, the money won’t be spent on sweets, the consumption of which might be the subject of a fine imposed by adults. It will be given to children to buy stationery.
The campaign seems to be working. Locals, who used to make fun of the children, are said now to be helping them to reduce the sale and consumption of liquor and cigarettes in the village.
Parents are said to have ditched their bad habits following pressure from the children.
Deliveries of tobacco products to retailers in Australia rose slightly last year for the first time in at least five years, despite the introduction of standardized packaging aimed at deterring smokers from indulging their habit, according to a Reuters story by Martinne Geller quoting industry sales figures.
In 2013, the first full year of standardized packaging, tobacco companies sold* the equivalent of 21.074 billion cigarettes (cigarettes and fine-cut cigarette-stick equivalents) in Australia, according to industry data provided by Philip Morris International. *The sales represent the amount of tobacco shipped to retailers, not retail sales to consumers or consumption.
The sales figure was up 0.3 percent on that of 2012 and reversed four straight years of declines.
The reason for the upturn was unclear, but one suggestion was that, with cigarette sales down (0.1 percent to 18.75 billion) and fine-cut sales up (3.4 percent to 2.32 cigarette-stick equivalents), smokers might be trading down to products that they could afford buy more of.
Meanwhile, a study, commissioned by the Cancer Society of Victoria and published in The British Medical Journal found that among 500 Australian smokers, most believed their cigarettes were less satisfying and of lower quality than before standardized packaging came in, with most also thinking more about quitting.
The full story, which mentions also the illicit trade, is at http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/24/tobacco-data-idUSL2N0MI1D720140324.
The proportion of smokers among women living in Shanghai, China, has risen significantly in recent years, according to a story on Ecns.cn.
Delegates at the Shanghai International Lung Cancer Forum were told on the weekend that while 3.7 percent of women in Shanghai smoked in 2011, now the figure has risen to 4.8 percent.
The daily stress of work, a desire for thrills and excitement, and peer group pressure were all cited by delegates as reasons for more women taking up smoking.
Fifty-seven percent of cigarettes sold in the U.S. are smuggled from states with lower tobacco taxes than the state in which they are sold, according to a story by Mary Beth Griggs for the Smithsonian Magazine quoting a new study by the Tax Foundation.
This need not be surprising. In New York, smokers might pay $14.50 for a pack of cigarettes, while in Kentucky the retail price might be less than $5.
“As a result, smugglers buy huge numbers of cigarettes in states with lower taxes and resell them in states with higher taxes …,” wrote Griggs. “Whether or not state taxes on cigarettes are too high, the difference between states’ prices does create an incentive to smuggle them across state lines.
“Profits can be huge, and often that money goes towards more dangerous enterprises, like organized crime and drug rings.”
Griggs described the Tax Foundation as a conservative think tank that supported “pro-growth tax reform,” which, she added, usually meant lower taxes.
Griggs’ story, which touches on the international illicit trade and on the situation in Iran in particular, is at http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/cigarette-smuggling-united-states-and-iran-180950201/?no-ist.
Tobacco trading centers have begun buying tobacco from farmers in the Virginia-growing areas of the Philippines’ Ilocos provinces, according to a story by the Philippine Information Agency quoting the National Tobacco Administration (NTA).
And because the trading season for burley and native tobacco opened officially in the first week of March, growers from across the country may now sell their tobacco directly to accredited trading centers.
Tobacco growers are expected to earn higher net income this season than they did last season because the floor prices across all grades for Virginia have been increased by PHP6 per kg, while the prices of burley and native tobacco have been increased by up to PHP10 per kg.
The NTA said the price of the highest grade of flue-cured Virginia (AA) was now PHP78 per kg, while the prices of the highest grades of burley and native tobacco were PHP61 per kg and PHP66 per kg, respectively.