Philip Morris pledges to end Marlboro cigarette sales in UK

Marlboro cigarettes | photo: Zee news

Great Britain – Chief Executive Officer of Tobacco group Philip Morris International on Wednesday, informed the Daily Mail of their plans to contribute to the country’s wider ambition to stamp out smoking by 2030, by stopping the sale of Marlboro cigarettes in Britain within a decade.

Chief Executive Officer Jacek Olczak said in the report that maximum ten years from now, they can completely solve the problem of smoking in the UK, adding that it would require the help of governments and regulators. Olczak also added that the Marlboro brand will disappear from British store shelves along with its other brands, ending a more than 100-year association with the country.

Olczak, who has embarked on a more aggressive strategy to diversify the world’s largest tobacco company away from cigarettes, has previously called on Britain to treat cigarettes like petrol cars and ban them in 10 years time.

The $153 billion-dollar company sells Marlboro cigarettes outside the United States after it split off from parent company Altria back in 2008. Altria is the main Marlboro seller in the U.S.

Earlier this month, Philip Morris launched a 1.05 billion pound bid for British asthma drug-maker Vectura (VEC.L) as part of its evolution into a broader healthcare and wellness company, that will also see it get more than 50% of its revenue from smoke-free products and at least $1 billion from products beyond nicotine by 2025.

The deal has received adequate backlash from anti-tobacco groups and has spurred a reaction from the World Health Organization, which called such healthcare partnerships by Big Tobacco as undermining its progress on controlling its deadly products.