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Now in its twelfth year, Class 46 is dedicated to European trade mark law and practice. This weblog is written by a team of enthusiasts who want to spread the word and share their thoughts with others.

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MONDAY, 16 JUNE 2014
Plain packaging and tobacco: "no new risks" regarding smuggling, says UK committee

In the United Kingdom, the House of Commons Select Committee issued a report on Friday relating to tobacco smuggling.  Unsurprisingly it contained some comments concerning plain packaging. In short:

In the Government’s 2012 consultation on standardised or ‘plain’ packaging of Comm tobacco products, opinion was almost equally divided on whether standardised packaging would increase the supply of, or demand for, illicit tobacco. HMRC’s [that's Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs] assessment is that plain packaging is not going to create any new risks for its operations, but it could well change the profile of the illicit market.

The report's summary concludes:

We believe that the decision on standardised packaging should be driven by health reasons and the imperative need to reduce the numbers of young people who start smoking. We note the statement of Sir Cyril Chantler to the effect that he was not convinced that standardised packaging would bring about an increase in the illicit market; even if this were the case, we believe that the proper response would be a more vigorous effort on enforcement rather than any lessening in the Government’s drive towards introducing standardised packaging. (Paragraph 44)

Source: Katharine Stephens (partner, London office of Bird & Bird LLP). Thanks, Katharine, for this information!

Posted by: Blog Administrator @ 07.58
Tags: plain packaging, UK,
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