The market share of illicit cigarettes plunged from roughly 20 per cent to nine per cent in the decade from 2009 to 2010-11, according to a parliamentary report cited by the Guardian newspaper.
Illicit RYO fell to 38 per cent from 60 per cent in the same time period, the newspaper said on its website. The report publicized by the all parliamentary group on smoking and health credits law enforcement efforts with disrupting smuggling supply lines, the newspaper reported.
MP Stephen Williams, who chairs the group, said findings show high cigarette prices have not led to increased smuggling, and disproved tobacco company claims that introducing plain-packaging would result in more illicit products, the Guardian reported.
However the UK Tobacco Manufacturer’s Association said more recent data showed the market share of illicit cigarettes rose from 17 per cent in 2011 to 21 per cent in 2012, the newspaper reported. An unnamed association spokesman said the parliamentary inquiry was biased, the Guardian reported. (pi)