JTI, BAT Issue Statements Following ECJ Tobacco Ruling
Following yesterday’s ruling by the European Court of Justice that the Tobacco Products Directive doesn’t go “beyond the limits of what is appropriate and necessary”, two major tobacco firms have issued statements on the matter.
JTI said that the Court’s decision was “regrettable”, adding that it “goes against a fundamental purpose of the EU treaty which is to further improve the functioning of the internal market by way of harmonized legislation.
“Instead, we are left with an inexplicable decision which may lead Member States to believe that they can infringe the principle of free movement of goods within the EU.”
Echoing its sentiment, BAT said that it believed the “Tobacco Products Directive is a clear example of the EU overstepping the limits of its authority. The reality is that many elements of the Directive are disproportionate, distort competition, and fail to respect the autonomy of the Member States.”
It noted that the ruling “does not endorse claims by some that the Directive authorises Member States to adopt plain packaging.
“In particular, what is clear from the Directive and the judgment is that measures that go beyond the requirements of the Directive, such as plain packaging, must still comply with the wider principles of EU and international law.”
There are approximately two weeks until the Tobacco Products Directive comes into force.
© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.