Retailers Against Smuggling launch airport and Aircoach campaign to raise awareness of the illegality of selling tobacco bought abroad, in Ireland.

Retailers Against Smuggling launch airport and Aircoach campaign to raise awareness of the illegality of selling tobacco bought abroad, in Ireland.

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  • July 5, 2017
  •   Legislation, Tobacco Smuggling
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Fine Gael Senator Jerry Buttimer at launch of campaign at Cork Airport (3 July) to raise public awareness of the impact reselling tobacco products bought abroad has on local retailers.
Pic: Brian Lougheed Photography

Retailers Against Smuggling (RAS) launched an extensive public awareness campaign to highlight to passengers that purchasing tobacco abroad and selling on in Ireland is a criminal offence in Cork Airport on 3 July with Fine Gael Senator Jerry Buttimer.  RAS aim to use the busy summer period to show that bringing home cigarettes and tobacco from other countries and selling them in Ireland is illegal and seriously undermines smaller retailers all across the country. The poster campaign displayed at Cork Airport and on the Dublin-Cork Aircoach route reminds holidaymakers from Ireland that they are breaking the law if they sell tobacco products purchased in another country.

In 2016 alone, Revenue’s Illegal Tobacco Products Research Surveys 2016 results showed that 412 million cigarettes as well as 9% of the growing Roll Your Own market were illegal.  This has meant that legitimate retailers who have paid taxes and duties to sell such items have lost trade to the black market, resulting in significant drop-off in revenues and a nationwide rise in what is effectively smuggling.  Hard-working retailers are deprived of legitimate tobacco sales and footfall that can have a major effect on profits and jobs, in a market where 10% of the packs held by smokers are classified as illegal.

Marcella O’Neill, RAS spokesperson, said of the launch: “Today is important for retailers across the country. Our campaign is designed to deter people who may be tempted to resell tobacco in Ireland without recognising the damage that this causes to shops nationwide. It is vital that those travelling are aware that purchasing cheaper tobacco products abroad and selling them on in Ireland is illegal and directly affects their local retailers in Cork”