Legislation to introduce plain packs for cigarettes was missing from the Queen’s Speech.

Loss of tobacco revenues, the threat from smugglers and putting packaging jobs in jeopardy are all said to have played their part in a successful lobbying campaign on behalf of the tobacco industry, which also cited the potential damage to independent retailers’ businesses.

NFRN National President Alan Smith said: “Although this has not been officially confirmed, we see it as very positive news. Time and again we have warned that such a move would be a gift to counterfeiters and counterfeit cigarettes are already a huge and growing problem.”