Financial Crisis Sparks Cigarette Smuggling in Greece

cigarette smuggling Nearly a quarter of tobacco products used in Greece are likely to have been smuggled in to the country, according to the latest data from the Center For Planning and Economic Research (KEPE). KEPE’s survey aimed to define the extent of the problem and to gauge its effects on Greece’s economy and public revenues, and to suggest realistic solutions. Using data from the Hellenic Statistic Authority (ELSTAT) and the Ministry of Finance, KEPE revised its estimates of the scale of the illicit trade in tobacco products up to 10.8 percent of the smoking market in 2010, 14.9 percent in 2011 and 17.2 percent in 2012. KEPE predicts that cigarette smuggling will have exceeded 23 percent in 2013. A far as tobacco taxes are concerned, Greece had the highest specific excise duty and the lowest ad valorem duty in the EU, the agency noted.