The rate at which cigarette sales drop is falling. However, the grey market is still harming the budget. 41 bln cigarettes were sold in 2015. This figure was 2.1 percent lower than the figures for the year before, but compared to previous years, but the rate at which the legal market is contracting has fallen.
In 2014, the tobacco sector sold almost 10 percent fewer cigarettes than in 2013. The drop is smaller, because in 2015, for the first time in many years, the excise for tobacco products was not increased. It has not been increased this year either.
– The fact that the excise was not increased coupled with growing purchasing power means that expenses on cigarettes are less severe for smokers – says expert of Employers of Poland Grzegorz Byszewski.
At the end of 2015, 18 percent of ready-made cigarettes sold came from the grey market – according to figures of the Almares Institute. The year before, the corresponding figure was 17 percent.
– If the government does not put its slogan of improving the tax collection rate to action soon, which would involve a.o. combatting the grey market, illegal trade will continue to have a negative impact on the tobacco industry and budget income – Byszewski believes.