LAUSANNE, Switzerland--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jun. 20, 2012--
Philip Morris International Inc. (PMI) (NYSE:PM) (Paris:PM) today
announced the results of a comprehensive analysis undertaken to assess
the illicit trade in contraband and counterfeit cigarettes in the
European Union (EU).
The study, conducted by KPMG LLP (KPMG), estimates that the annual
consumption of illicit cigarettes in the EU in 2011 was 65.3 billion
cigarettes. This is the highest ever recorded level and constitutes the
fifth consecutive yearly increase. KPMG estimates the annual EU-wide tax
loss due to cigarette smuggling to be approximately 11.3 billion euros.
Commenting on the results, Artyom Chernis, PMI's Vice President Illicit
Trade Strategies and Prevention, said: “Illicit cigarettes represent
a serious problem for business and government alike. Beyond the
significant economic damage, the illicit cigarette trade breeds
criminality as profits are often used to fund other criminal activities
such as drug smuggling, human trafficking and terrorism.”
“Despite efforts by law enforcement authorities to curb the illegal
cigarette market, it remains a significant problem, having grown by more
than 5 billion cigarettes in the EU in the last 5 years. PMI remains
committed to continuing its close cooperation with governments and other
stakeholders to implement effective solutions to tackle this critical
Significant findings of the KPMG study include:
Illicit cigarette consumption increased by 1.1 billion in 2011 versus
2010 to a total of 65.3 billion cigarettes, which equates to 10.4% of
all cigarette consumption in the EU. This is the highest ever recorded
level and constitutes the fifth consecutive yearly increase.
Illicit cigarette consumption in the EU in 2011 was larger than the
total legal cigarette markets of France and Portugal combined.
Illicit cigarette consumption increased in Mediterranean countries,
including Spain, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Cyprus and Malta and
amounted to 12.6 billion cigarettes in 2011.
2011 witnessed a sharp increase in “illicit white” cigarettes -
cigarettes that are manufactured for the sole purpose of being
smuggled into and sold illegally in another country. In 2011, illicit
whites reached more than 15.7 billion cigarettes across the EU,
compared to nearly zero in 2006.
PMI is firmly opposed to the illicit trade in cigarettes and has
undertaken a broad series of measures to combat this growing problem,
including implementation of a global tracking and tracing system,
comprehensive know-your-customer policies, consumer education and
collaboration with governments. The key to success in this effort is
local and international cooperation among numerous stakeholders,
including governments, enforcement agencies, manufacturers and retailers.
For more information on PMI's activities to combat the illicit trade in
tobacco products, visit: www.pmi.com/illicittrade
Philip Morris International Inc.
Philip Morris International Inc. (PMI) is the leading international
tobacco company, with seven of the world’s top 15 brands, including
Marlboro, the number one cigarette brand worldwide. PMI’s products are
sold in approximately 180 countries. In 2011, the company held an
estimated 16.0% share of the total international cigarette market
outside of the U.S., or 28.1% excluding the People’s Republic of China
and the U.S. For more information, see www.pmi.com.
KPMG Study on the illicit cigarette consumption in the EU
KPMG has conducted this study every year since 2006, as part of the
landmark cooperation agreement between PMI, the European Commission and
the EU member states. The results of these studies have been shared with
the member states and the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF).
Source: Philip Morris International
Philip Morris International
PMI Press Office
(0) 58 242 4500