The illegal cigarette trade doesn’t begin or stop at EU borders. In fact, much of the illicit tobacco enters from outside Europe. That’s why concerted action within the EU can have a global impact. We're committed to encouraging open dialogue about the most effective ways to combat illicit trade in tobacco products by involving manufacturers, suppliers of key components, technology providers, customs authorities, and other law enforcement agencies.
We fully support ratification of the World Health Organization’s FCTC Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products, an important advance in combatting illegal and unregulated tobacco trade. We are convinced that ratifying the FCTC Protocol will help the EU gain the upper hand in fighting the black market in tobacco products and will pave the way for controls in tracking and tracing, licensing, and due diligence.
Learn more about our approach by reading our position paper ‘Fighting the Illicit Trade in Tobacco in the EU.’
In 2004, Philip Morris International, the European Union, and 10 of its member states signed a 12-year cooperation agreement, which by 2009 was ratified by all 28 member states. The purpose of the agreement was to coordinate efforts in combatting illicit trade in PMI brands within the EU.
As part of the agreement, we introduced stringent record-keeping, screening standards for potential business partners, and strict control of cash payments. We also provided USD 1.25 billion in funding to the Commission and member states to underpin these efforts over the course of the agreement.
The anti-contraband and anti-counterfeit cooperation between PMI and the EU has been highly successful.
These measures include:
Working with governments and law enforcement to stop the global flow of illicit whites
PMI's global initiative aimed at fighting illegal trade worldwide
A systems-based approach to ensuring health and safety across our operations.