For more information of these issues, see below:
Federal, state and local governments have looked to cigarette tax increases to help fill budget shortfalls. Often these excise tax increases do not meet projected revenues and create incentives for cigarette smuggling.
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In recent years, some in the public health community have expressed concern that tobacco products with characterizing flavors other than tobacco are packaged, advertised, and marketed in a manner that may appeal to youth.
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As excise taxes increase, so does the price of tobacco products. Criminal organizations exploit these higher costs by selling smuggled, counterfeit, illegally-imported and stolen tobacco products for their own financial gain. This illicit trade is a concern for our business, law enforcement and regulatory authorities, as well as the legitimate wholesale and retail trade. This illicit activity deprives governments of tax revenue and hurts law-abiding businesses.
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PM USA actively supported legislation that granted the FDA federal regulatory authority over tobacco products. Under this law, FDA has authority to regulate cigarettes, cigarette tobacco, “roll-your-own” tobacco, smokeless tobacco products, cigars, pipe tobacco and e-vapor products.
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In 1998, the nation’s leading cigarette manufacturers including Philip Morris USA signed the Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) with 46 states, five U.S. territories and the District of Columbia. The MSA was an historic agreement that imposed significant restrictions on a range of cigarette marketing activities and required the participating manufacturers to make billions of dollars of settlement payments to the states.
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PM USA believes that active participation at all levels of government is vital to our business and to our democracy. We advocate on policy issues relevant to our company by engaging responsibly with government officials, retailers, wholesalers, suppliers, consumers, employees and many other stakeholders.
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Kids should not smoke or use tobacco products. As a manufacturer of products intended for adults, PM USA believes that we have an important role to play in preventing underage tobacco use.
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Public health officials have determined that secondhand smoke from cigarettes causes disease (including lung cancer and heart disease) in non-smoking adults. The public health community also has concluded that secondhand smoke, the combination of the smoke coming from the lit end of a cigarette plus the smoke exhaled by a smoker, can exacerbate adult asthma and cause eye, throat and nasal irritation.
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PM USA is opposed to legislation that would prohibit certain classes of retail stores from selling tobacco products. Such legislation deprives businesses of the opportunity to sell a legal product, unfairly shifts business away from some retailers to others—with no public policy benefit—and imposes an unnecessary inconvenience on adult consumers.
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