We are strongly opposed to the Smoke-free Environments (Tobacco Plain Packaging) Amendment Bill ("the Bill") and call on the Government not to pass the Bill. Below is an overview of why. For more detail, click the links on the right.
- Plain packaging unlawfully removes our intellectual property rights.
- Intellectual property is one of the most valuable assets of any business. Our brands are our intellectual property, which we have created and invested in. Plain packaging would clearly violate several WTO agreements which are vital to New Zealand's economy.
- If New Zealand introduces plain packaging, it will do serious damage to its own economic interests. More than 15 countries (including China and Indonesia) have publicly voiced their opposition to plain packaging. New Zealand would compromise its ability to credibly oppose brand expropriation policies in other countries when they effect New Zealand's exports.
- There's no credible evidence that the design of tobacco product packaging has any impact on tobacco consumption or smoking initiation or cessation.
- Objective evidence about the effects of plain packaging on actual smoking behavior now exists. Plain packaging has been in force in Australia since 1 December 2012 – it has failed to reduce smoking rates and the decline in legal tobacco sales volumes has halted entirely.The illegal market in Australia has increased significantly since the introduction of plain packaging.
- Criminals do not pay tax, nor do they comply with laws and regulations. They provide the cheapest available cigarettes and have no qualms about selling to children.
- Plain packaging, once introduced, is unlikely to be limited to tobacco products. Which products will be next?