Tobacco retailers across the UK have expressed frustration that tax on cigarette taxes will increase by 2% above inflation and hand rolling tobacco by 5% above inflation following today’s Budget.
The Tobacco Retailers’ Alliance (TRA), which represents shopkeepers across the UK, campaigns to raise awareness of the link between high tobacco tax and tobacco smuggling.
Suleman Khonat, the National Spokesperson of the Tobacco Retailers’ Alliance and a retailer from Blackburn commented:
“Today’s above inflation tax increase is a gift to tobacco smugglers who make more money selling their illegal product here compared to anywhere else in the EU. Smugglers will now make even more profit, encouraging an increasing number to ply their illegal trade in communities across the UK, selling to customers irrespective of their age.”
The black market in smuggled and counterfeit tobacco already causes a loss to the Treasury of almost £6 million each day, and deprives legitimate businesses of trade.
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Notes to Editors
The Tobacco Retailers’ Alliance is funded by the Tobacco Manufacturers’ Association (TMA)