Clear The Air News Tobacco Blog Rotating Header Image

Crackdown urged on illicit cigs trade

A lobby group is calling for heavier penalties on illicit tobacco.

The call coincides with Sunday’s World No Tobacco Day campaign by the World Health Organization, which is calling on all nations to stop the unlawful trade.

Hong Kong United Against Illicit Tobacco wants the Organized and Serious Crimes Ordinance to be enforced and also seeks heavier penalties.

Group adviser Jeff Herbert, a former police senior superintendent, said it is indisputable the trafficking and distribution of illicit tobacco is a business dominated by criminal syndicates.

Hong Kong’s illicit cigarettes consumption rate stood at a massive 33.6 percent of total consumption, costing the government HK$3.2 billion in foregone tax revenues, an Oxford Economics study said last year.

Hong Kong Newspaper and Magazine Merchants’ chairman Bacon Liu Sair-ching said the illicit trade directly hurts the livelihood of small retailers.

“The last thing we need is extreme tax that can make Hong Kong’s rampant illicit trade problem even worse.” JASMINE SIU

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>