Thursday Jul 24, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
32o C
23o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Smuggled cigarettes take up 15 pct of market

By Anestis Dokas

The sale of contraband cigarettes in Greece has grown considerably, estimated at some 3.5 billion euros per year for 2010 and 2011, an amount which corresponds to about 15 percent of the legal market, according to Spyros Flengas, the head of the Association of Hellenic Tobacco Industries.

In a bid to combat the phenomenon that deprives the state of millions of euros in tax revenues and tobacco firms of a significant amount of income, the Papastratos tobacco company has offered to deliver special seminars for police officers that investigate cigarette smuggling, as well as provide special equipment that can detect illegal cargoes, as part of an agreement with the Public Order Ministry.

Flengas says that the World Health Organizations protocol aimed at the ellimination of the illicit trade in tobacco products, to be completed by the end of 2012, provides for the industry to establish a global tracking and tracing system for its products within three years from the signing of the protocol. The marking of the products will have to reveal the authenticity of the tobacco product, its production date, the machine that has produced it and the identity of its first recipient.

Prior to the onset of the financial crisis in Greece the contraband cigarette market accounted for just 3 percent of sales, given that legally sold products were relatively cheap. However economic developments have led to consumers turning increasingly to illegal products while the legal market declines at an alarming pace.

The domestic tobacco industry estimates that the legal market has shrunk in the two years from January 2010 to December 2011 by a total of 25 percent, while the first couple of months of 2012 saw an additional drop of about 10 percent, despite a significant decline in the price of expensive legal products, averaging about 12.5 percent, that applied for the first time in December 2011. State revenues from cigarette taxation amounted to 3.6 billion euros in 2011.

Tobacco industry officials are telling Kathimerini that cigarette smuggling has spun out of control and is threatening the very viability of tobacco companies.

Yet consumers swing in favor of low-cost tobacco products is not only down to the economic crisis, but also due to high taxation. This has led to huge price hikes that have seen expensive brands of cigarette soar from 3.20 euros per pack to 4 euros within just 12 months. Some 84 percent of that price concerns the special consumption tax and value-added tax, a rate that is considered one of the highest in the European Union, where the average tax rate is at 75 percent.

ekathimerini.com , Sunday September 2, 2012 (20:33)  
Eurozone bonds yields rise on strong data, dulling QE prospects
PPC approves $243 million wind investment in Greece
No property transactions for tax evaders
IOBE warns crisis will return if reforms are not implemented
Presidential election will not lead to snap elections, Samaras tells ND deputies
Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has told New Democracy MPs that he does not think Greece will go to snap elections early next year over the election of a new president. Speaking off the recor...
Medical assistance for Acropolis visitors
Visitors to the Acropolis in Athens as of Thursday will benefit from emergency medical assistance following the dispatch of a medical private to the ancient site. The move follows a request ...
Inside News
TRACK & FIELD
Athens, the Marathon capital of the world for good
Paco Borao, the man who restored Athens as the Marathon capital of the world with the establishment at the Olympic Sports Center of the headquarters of the International Association of Marat...
TRACK & FIELD
Pole vault record on same day as three doping cases
Greek track and field had a mixed weekend, as on the same day as Katerina Stefanidi matched the national record in pole vault as well as the leading result in Europe so far this season, thre...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
When evaluation is seen as useless
The reactions toward the governments plans for an evaluation of public sector workers are completely unsurprising. Civil servants and not just the unions that represent them abhor the m...
EDITORIAL
Playing the good guy
There is a part of the government that is striving to fulfill the commitments that Greece has undertaken toward its foreign creditors, most of which pertain to reforms that are absolutely es...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Eurozone bonds yields rise on strong data, dulling QE prospects
2. PPC approves $243 million wind investment in Greece
3. Presidential election will not lead to snap elections, Samaras tells ND deputies
4. Medical assistance for Acropolis visitors
5. Samaras and Venizelos meet amid internal strife within coalition
6. Efforts continue on Crete to find Sifis the crocodile
more news
Today
This Week
1. Quadriplegic woman on life support 'dies due to unpaid power bills'
2. Democracy 'retreated' during crisis, says Papoulias
3. Family of deceased woman on life support says application for 'special status' had been filed with PPC
4. Efforts continue on Crete to find 'Sifis' the crocodile
5. Samaras and Venizelos meet amid internal strife within coalition
6. Medical assistance for Acropolis visitors
Today
This Week
1. The cost of excellence
2. Ex-Credit Suisse banker taps lesson for Greek rebound
3. Greece seen in third bailout as bonds not enough, economists say
4. Climber dies in Mount Olympus fall
5. Greek banks able to tap investors after stress tests, HFSF Says
6. Greek sovereign debt at 174.1 percent of GDP in first quarter
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.