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The Australian government has been sued by tobacco giant Phillip Morris less than an hour after becoming the first country in the world to pass a law requiring all tobacco products to be sold in uniform, plain packaging printed on dull olive green. The law, which comes into force next December, would require all cigarettes to be sold without any branding apart from the company’s name at the bottom in a uniform font. The packaging will also feature larger health warnings and images of the negative effects of smoking.
Phillip Morris is suing the government on the grounds that the new legislation will breach a bilateral investment treaty as well as making fake brands and counterfeit cigarettes far harder to stop.
Australia’s Minister for Health and Ageing Nicola Roxon said while the tobacco industry was “fighting to protect its profits, we are fighting to protect lives”.
Have a look at this informative, albeit amusingly over the top, video from the British American Tobacco company outlining their arguments against the use of plain packaging: http://youtu.be/lpFx7pLy2L0
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