News : Imperial Tobacco Launches Illicit Trade Hotline in Australia
Baulkham Hills, NSW, Australia, March 12, 2015 -- Alarmed at the sales of illicit tobacco increasing year on year, Imperial Tobacco has this week launched an Illicit Trade Hotline for the use of anyone with information relating to illicit tobacco. Callers are able to report any type of illicit tobacco "incident" and will be guided through the call by trained staff at an independent call centre. Callers can choose to remain anonymous or identify themselves, with all reports treated confidentially.
Andrew Gregson, Head of Corporate Affairs and Legal for Imperial Tobacco Australia, says he is very excited to launch this initiative.
"The illegal tobacco market is now at its highest ever point. It’s 14.3 per cent of total consumption. We’re hearing from frustrated retailers that are suffering from a decrease in sales because they are trying to compete with people selling illicit trade at much lower prices than the legal products they are selling. Now they will have a way to provide information on these criminals whilst remaining totally anonymous."
The number for the hotline is 1800 630 003 and is open to anyone to call. Imperial Tobacco will then ensure that any outcomes or relevant information that is received through the hotline are shared with the relevant authorities.
"ITA will contact the relevant Government Departments with any relevant information we collect through the hotline. We would then urge the Government and relevant agencies to take action so that we can try to eliminate this problem once and for all."
"Illicit Trade is costing Australian taxpayers $1.1 billion every year in lost excise. The money is going straight into the pockets of well organised criminals who certainly don’t have the best interests of Australians driving them. Hopefully with more eyes and ears now able to pass on information we at least put a little more fear into these criminals. Anyone could be watching them and at any time they could be caught."
Posted by Veronica Silva Cusi, news correspondent
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About Imperial Tobacco:
Imperial Tobacco Group plc is a British multinational tobacco company headquartered in Bristol, United Kingdom.
Published: Friday, March 13, 2015