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Leaf growers renew call for FDI in India

| November 15, 2013

Indian tobacco farmers operating under the banner of the United Association of Tobacco Growers (UATG) are urging the Indian government to allow foreign direct investment (FDI) in the tobacco sector, according to a story in the most recent issue of the BBM Bommidala Group newsletter.

The farmers believe that opening the sector to FDI would allow them to realize remunerative prices for their crops.

Tobacco growers in India, unlike their counterparts in countries such as Brazil, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Malawi and Kenya, were currently unable to benefit fully from favourable international market conditions, said UATG secretary C. Yashwant Kumar.

Meanwhile, UATG’s president, P. Bhadri Reddy, said it was high time the government opened up the sector to global players and turned India into a market that operated in the wider interests of growers.

JT increases domestic cigarette volumes

| November 15, 2013

Japan Tobacco Inc.’s domestic cigarette sales volume during October, at 10.2 billion, was increased by 2 percent on that of October 2012, 10 billion, according to preliminary figures issued by the company today. The October 2012 figure was up by 4.2 percent on that of October 2011.

Volume during April–October, at 69.8 billion, was up by 0.4 percent on that of April–October 2012, 69.5 billion, which was increased by 15 percent on that of April–October 2011.

JT’s market share stood at 61.1 percent in October, at 60.7 percent during April–October, and at 59.6 percent for the full year to the end of March.

JT’s domestic cigarette revenue during October, at ¥55.8 billion, was up by 1.7 percent on its October 2012 revenue, ¥54.8 billion.

Revenue during April–October, at ¥383.1 billion, was increased by 0.1 percent on that of April–October 2012, ¥382.8 billion.

Lorillard to participate at NY conference

| November 15, 2013

Lorillard’s chairman, president and CEO, Murray S. Kessler, and its CFO, David H. Taylor, are due to participate in the Morgan Stanley Global Consumer Conference in New York, New York, from 10.20 hours to 10:30 a.m. Eastern Time on Nov. 19.

The presentation will be webcast live and access will be available through the Investor Relations section of Lorillard’s website at www.lorillard.com.

The presentation will be available in an archived format for 30 days following the event.

JTI to launch tobacco vaporizer in Korea

| November 14, 2013

JTI Korea said yesterday that it would introduce Ploom, a tobacco vaporizer, on the domestic market on Nov. 18, according to a story in The Korea Herald.

The Ploom vaporizer is a pocket-sized smoking alternative device that heats tobacco contained in pods to a constant temperature, vaporizing nicotine and flavors without burning the materials or producing smoke.

In December 2011, Japan Tobacco International and the San Francisco-based Ploom announced that they had entered into an exclusive, long-term cooperation agreement under which JTI would commercialize Ploom’s new generation of “smoking alternative products” outside the U.S.

Ploom capsules will be available in Korea in six variants: Mevius, Camel, Cooler, Gold, Orchard and Alert. A multipack containing all six variants also will be available.

A pack, comprising 12 capsules, will retail at WON4,500: about twice the price of a pack of 20 cigarettes.

E-cigarettes banned on public transport

| November 14, 2013

The use of e-cigarettes on Switzerland’s public transport system will be banned as of next month, according to a Medical Xpress story quoting the national association of mass-transit operators.

From Dec. 15, those caught using e-cigarettes on public transport will face a fine of CHF25, a spokesman for the Public Transportation Union told the Swiss news agency ATS.

The regulation against smoking tobacco on public transport was extended to take in e-cigarettes because, it was said, inspectors had difficulty distinguishing between traditional and e-cigarettes

Swiss regulations do not allow the sale of e-cigarettes, but their use in the country is allowed and the federal public health agency has noted an increase in their use.

There are currently no regulations in Switzerland governing the use of e-cigarettes in restaurants.

Corporate watchdog concerned over direction of Trans-Pacific Partnership

| November 14, 2013

U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman, who is leading closed-door negotiations concerning the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), is pushing a proposal that would grant tobacco manufacturers the right to sue governments for passing laws aimed at protecting the public from tobacco, according to a Corporate Accountability International (CAI) report.

“Disturbingly—but not surprisingly—the U.S. trade representative has caved to Philip Morris International’s lobbying, promoting the tobacco industry’s interests over the public interest,” said CAI. “In particular, he is advancing a proposal that could enable Big Tobacco to sue countries implementing strong tobacco control measures, by claiming trade violations. If passed, the TPP will threaten governments’ sovereign rights to protect people from the tobacco industry’s deadly reach. It has the potential to turn back the clock on decades of hard-won progress secured through the global tobacco treaty [the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control].”

CAI is concerned not only with the influence exerted by tobacco interests. “The TPP is being driven by more than 600 lobbyists representing the interests of Big Business, including lobbyists for global tobacco associations and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as well as for global corporations such as Monsanto [and] Wal-Mart,” it said. “As a result, the trade agreement will have devastating consequences for people around the Pacific Rim. For example, as it now stands, the TPP threatens to decrease people’s access to medicine, water down food-safety laws and undermine public health advances.”

The report is at http://www.stopcorporateabuse.org/blog/TPP.

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