Tobacco giant Philip Morris International plans to stop selling cigarettes in the United Kingdom in the next decade, according to its CEO Jacek Olczak.
In an interview with the Daily Mail Sunday, Olczak said the sales of the company’s most popular product Marlboro cigarettes will also be stopped.
The move is said to be part of the company’s plan to phase out traditional tobacco products and switch to less harmful modern alternatives. The company had earlier said it aims that more than half of net revenues should come from smoke-free products in 2025.
Olczak, who took charge as CEO in May, plans to lead the company’s smoke-free transformation. According to him, the company’s new mission is to find and provide less harmful alternatives to cigarettes who could not quit smoking.
While talking about Marlboro brand, he told, “It will disappear. The first choice for consumers is they should quit smoking. But if they don’t, the second best choice is to let them switch to the better alternatives.”
Philip Morris’ objective is to fully leave smoking combustible cigarettes behind to one day become a smoke-free company.
The company offers modern alternatives to traditional tobacco products, such as e-cigarettes or heated tobacco devices, which are considered less harmful.
In 2019, the UK government had announced its ambition of going smoke-free by 2030 in England, and 2034 in Scotland, while Northern Ireland and Wales were yet set a date. According to the UK Parliament website, “smoke-free” in practice involves reaching 5% average adult smoking prevalence.
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