74% of offers for the sale of illegal tobacco are on social networks

#industry news

Three quarters (74%) of illegal offers for the sale of tobacco and nicotine-containing products on the Internet are on social networks, Irina Bushina, director of the National Scientific Center for Competencies in Combating Illicit Trafficking in Industrial Products, said at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF).

Despite the outright ban on selling on the Internet, such facts take place. Of particular concern is the multitude of active offers on social networks - three quarters, 74% of the total number of identified, recorded illegal offers. By the end of 2023, as for cigarettes, such offers are growing," Bushina said.

According to her, more than half (53%) of liquids for electronic nicotine delivery vehicles are sold at prices below the amount of excise duty and VAT.

Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Ekaterina Priezzheva also said that in 2023, the number of retail outlets selling vapes legally increased 14 times, largely due to the labeling system. According to her, over the past five years, the share of illicit trafficking in tobacco products has decreased significantly - in 2019 it amounted to 15.6%, by the end of 2023, the indicator decreased by up to 12.6%.

"By 2024, the activities of 46 large illegal sites where counterfeit products were produced were suppressed. In 2023 alone, the activities of 15 such illegal industries were suspended," Priezzheva added.

The St. Petersburg International Economic Forum is taking place from 5 to 8 June. The theme of this year's forum is "The foundation of a multipolar world is the formation of new growth points." Meetings of SMEs, creative business, SPIEF Youth Day, as well as forums "Drug Safety", "SPIEF Academy" and "SPIEF Junior" are planned. The organizer is the Roscongress Foundation. TASS acts as an information partner of the event.