Tobacco, Nicotine, and Illicit Markets

Will we ever stamp out smoking entirely?

United Kingdom airport passenger claimed 22,000 cigarettes were all for his 100-a-day habit. Millions of illegal cigarettes seized in West Midlands in a year. Nine men convicted over illegal cigarette plot in Kent. Strengthen UK laws to foil illegal tobacco trade. UK cigarette prices rise 50% as industry blames tax.

Moldova seeks to wipe out cigarette smuggling on Ukraine border. Ukraine vows to enhance collaboration with European Union to tackle smuggling. 1.3 million cigarettes were seized in July by Bulgaria Customs. Tons of illegal tobacco, cigarettes seized in Greece police operation.

United Arab Emirates cigarettes without these new markings are fake or illegal. Cigarette smuggling scandal reveals problems in Taiwan bureaucracy, not politics.

Packets must bear either a red or green tag, the tax authority said. Courtesy: Federal Tax Authority

New Zealand Customs seizes half a million smuggled cigarettes.
An Auckland businessman hid 2,418 cartons of Chinese cigarettes inside boxes of food that he brought into the country last month in a shipping container.

Operation Illogic takes down 4 million-dollar Long Island counterfeit e-cigarette ring. Feds bust North Carolina-based, 12.3 million-dollar cigarette trafficking, money laundering ring in Operation Southern Lights.

The perverse effect of sin taxes: the rise of illicit white cigarettes.
In this paper, we define illicit white cigarettes as cigarettes that are legal in the country of production, but that are illegally smuggled into other markets without the payment of applicable taxes. This paper analyzes whether taxes create a price wedge between legal and illicit cigarettes and thereby affect the availability and trade of illicit whites across markets.

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