Tobacco Firm Threatens Legal Action Over Ireland’s Plain Packaging Law

TOBACCO FIRM THREATENS LEGAL ACTION OVER IRELAND’S PLAIN PACKAGING LAW

The government is being told to stop work on plain packaging legislation for cigarettes.

One of the world’s largest tobacco firms has warned that if it does not promise to do so by Friday, it could face a High Court claim for damages.

JTI Ireland owns the Benson and Hedges and Silk Cut brands.

The news comes as the Minister for Children James Reilly prepares to face an Oireachtas Committee to discuss the overall issue.

He has responded to the letter from JTI by saying it is not his responsibility to protect the profits of tobacco companies.

Chairman of the health sub-committee deputy Jerry Buttimer says today’s hearing is another step towards the legislation being enacted.

“We’ve heard from a wide variety of interested parties including the tobacco industry, whom I’m sure will be again today taking keen interest in our proceedings” he said.

“But this bill has been a long time in gestation, the minister is very committed to seeing the legislation enacted and our committee stage hearing today will be the the next stage leading to report and final stage in the Dail at a later time” he added.

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