Tobacco firms may challenge govt plan for plain cigarette packets

Tobacco companies say they may mount a legal challenge to the Government decision to introduce plain packaging on tobacco products.

Japan Tobacco International has said it is considering all its options following the announcement that legislation to standardise packaging is to be implemented.

Newsagents are also concerned. They claim a similar move in Australia has led to an increase in sales of counterfeit cigarettes.

Public Affairs manager for the National Federation of Retail Newsagents of Ireland Deirdre Drennan said: "Based on what has happened in Australia shows 59 million more cigarettes were sold in Australia in the first year of plain packaging tobacco products."

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