Editor’s Note:  The attached study by C. Moodie, G. Hastingsand L. Joossens, is predicated on the incorrect premise that “There is no evidence the counterfeiters are putting any great effort into pack quality, or getting it right.”   Although a full refutation of the basis for the study is beyond the scope of this Note, the  Cancer Council of Australia, has stated that “Counterfeit cigarettes are direct copies of legal cigarette brands, produced overseas then illegally imported into Australia and sold. The quality of counterfeit product varies, but some feature packaging that is almost indistinguishable from the genuine article. Many consumers are unaware that they have purchased a counterfeit product until they try it.” 

Editor’s Note: The attached News Analysis from the April 2010 issue of Tobacco Control explains that “Asking smokers to tell you if the pack they have is legal or illegal is simply useless” and that “Counterfeit or illegal brands are often indistinguishable from the real thing.”


By:  Tim Wilson/Institute of Public Affairs


Removing trademarks from R 18+ films and tobacco products may significantly devalue the intellectual property rights giving them the opportunity to demand compensation on “just terms”. Similarly compensation may also be required under investment provisions in free trade agreements like the USFTA. And with compensation calculated to range from $108 million to $3.4 billion per year the price tag is not cheap.