Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 


Select Committee Given Strong Opposition to Plain Packaging

media release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Select Committee Presented with Strong Opposition to Plain Packaging

The Select Committee on tobacco plain packaging heard strong opposition from New Zealand’s largest tobacco company, British American Tobacco New Zealand (BATNZ), when it appeared before the Committee in Auckland today.

Steve Rush, BATNZ General Manager, outlined the reasons that the company opposed the Bill. “It’s clear from what’s occurred in Australia that plain packaging simply won’t work to reduce tobacco consumption but it would unlawfully remove intellectual property, breach NZ’s international trade obligations and severely restrict our ability to compete for existing adult consumers,” said Mr Rush.

“Australia is being challenged by five countries at the WTO and is also facing a separate bi-lateral investment treaty claim. New Zealand cannot, on the one hand ignore its obligations under international trade treaties, while, on the other hand, seek the protection of those same treaties to protect its interests overseas.

“In Australia, plain packaging hasn’t reduced smoking rates or uptake and since it was introduced the long-term decline in industry volumes has halted while illegal tobacco has reached a record high. Seventeen months ago this was a risky experiment. Now it is just failed policy.”

Mr Rush also presented the Committee with less trade restrictive alternatives for the Government to consider, including removing the personal use exemption for homegrown tobacco.

“This is a legal anomaly that allows adults to grow unlimited amounts of tobacco and manufacture the equivalent of around 80 cigarettes a day for personal use. This is an unregulated supply of tobacco which undermines the Government’s health objectives, is clearly open to abuse and should be stopped.

“If the Government is serious about reducing smoking then it should consider alternatives that will work such as removing the personal use exemption for homegrown tobacco and making it an offence to supply tobacco to a minor. This would be effective rather than plain packaging which would be a symbolic measure, but one that would ultimately have damaging, unintended consequences for New Zealand businesses and trade” said Mr Rush.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Economic Update: RBNZ Says Rate Cut Seems Likely

The Reserve Bank will likely cut interest rates further as a persistently strong kiwi dollar makes it difficult for the bank to meet its inflation target, it said. The local currency fell. More>>

ALSO:

House Price Action Plan: RBNZ Signals National Lending Restrictions

The central bank wants to cap bank lending to property investors with a deposit of less than 40 percent at 5 percent and restore the 10 percent limit for owner-occupiers wanting to take out a mortgage with a deposit of less than 20 percent, according to a consultation paper released today. More>>

ALSO:

Sparks Fly: Gordon Campbell On China Steel Dumping Allegations

No doubt, officials on the China desk at MFAT have prided themselves on fashioning a niche position for New Zealand right in between the US and China – and leveraging off both of them! Well, as the Aussies would say, of MFAT: tell ‘em they’re dreaming. More>>

ALSO:

Loan Sharks: Finance Companies Found Guilty Of Breaching Fair Trading Act

Finance companies Budget Loans and Evolution Finance, run by former 1980s corporate high-flyer Allan Hawkins, have been found guilty of 106 charges of breaching the Fair Trading Act for misleading 21 borrowers while enforcing loan contracts. More>>

ALSO:

Post Panama Papers: Govt To Adopt Shewan's Foreign Trust Recommendations

The government will adopt all of the recommendations from former PwC chairman John Shewan to increase disclosure and introduce a register for foreign trusts with new legislation to be introduced next month. More>>

ALSO:

The Price Of Cheese: Cheddar At Eight-Year Low

Food prices decreased 0.5 percent in the year to June 2016, influenced by lower grocery food prices (down 2.3 percent), Statistics New Zealand said today. Compared with June 2015, cheese prices were down 9.5 percent, fresh milk was down 3.9 percent, and yoghurt was down 9.2 percent. More>>

ALSO:

Financial Advisers: New 'Customer-First' Obligations

Goldsmith plans to do away with the current adviser designations which he says have been "unsatisfactory" in that some advisers are obliged to disclose potential conflicts of interest and act in their customers' best interests, but others are not. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Business
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news