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Plain cigarette packaging will lead to a surge of smuggling.


If UK will adopt a new law requiring remove all cigarette brand marking and plain them, this will lead to a sharp increase of the smuggling cigarettes.

That's what happened in Australia in 2012 after the adoption of similar legislation. According to study conducted by audit company KPMG, in 2013, the most popular brand in Australia was illegally selling cigarettes "Manchester". These brand are also known as "white counterfeit."

This is no fake cigarettes - Manchester brand is not trying to copy the cigarettes produced by other tobacco company. The package of cigarettes Manchester looks extremely traditional. The package has an inscription "Produced with the permission of the JSS Tobacco Ltd. London - United Kingdom", - with a few grammatical issues.

In the rest the cigarette package looks solidly made and even has health warnings.

Experts believe that this new rules will certainly lead to a significant increment in sales of counterfeit cigarettes of traditional brands: one of the points is that cigarette packs without original labeling is easier to imitate.

But most of all, according to KPMG analysts, the ban on branding will benefit illicit white or simply "white" cigarette brands like Manchester.

These cigarettes can be produced in legitimate way they are called "white", usually such cigarettes are never sold legally and often made special for smuggling. According to experts, since the beginning of 2012 to mid-2013 sales of "white smuggled" cigarettes increased by four times.

"White" cigarettes are sold at a price two times lower than the popular "legal" brands such as Marlboro or Winfield.

According to analysts, in addition to Manchester appeared other less common brands of "white contraband" cigarettes such as: Timeless Time, Sunlite and Win.

Dr. Crawford Moody of the University of Stirling notes that often "white" cigarettes are produced legally, such as Manchester brand in the UAE, China and the Philippines, and even in this case have a price advantage. They may also legitimately be sold in some countries of the Asia-Pacific region.

"In contrast to "white contraband," counterfeit famous cigarette brands are illegal, no matter where they were made and their trafficking involves additional risks and costs" - Moody said.

At the same time, in Australia cigarette packs with usual to smoker eye label like Manchester, now catch the eye.

"On the one hand, it makes them more attractive to buyers, on the other - makes it easier for authorities to recognise the illegal trade of cigarettes" - said Dr. Moody.