The World Trade Organization’s (WTO) Appellate Body (AB) has supported Australia on its tobacco plain packaging requirements.

The favourable ruling follows after Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Ukraine and Indonesia complained that Australia imposed restrictions on trademarks, geographical indications (GIs), and other plain packaging requirements.

The international trade court has rejected Honduras and the Dominican Republic’s allegations that Australia’s tobacco “plain packaging” requirements conflict with WTO provisions.

The decision brings an end to the eight years old dispute brought forth by the five countries.

Following this ruling, plain packaging measures will be allowed to stand in Australia.

Meanwhile, British American Tobacco (BAT) issued a statement on WTO’s decision.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

BAT spokesperson said: “Naturally, we are disappointed with the ultimate findings of the report. However, it is important to note that decisions from the WTO Panel or Appellate Body do not set a global precedent when it comes to this measure, and will only be binding to the parties involved in this dispute.

“We believe a more effective way for governments to address smoking rates is to focus their efforts on providing smokers with a greater choice of potentially reduced risk alternatives, such as vapour products.

“We remain firm in our belief that plain packaging is an ineffective and disproportionate measure that doesn’t reduce smoking levels. Our position that plain packaging is bad policy, continues to be supported by the evidence coming out of Australia that shows the measure has not achieved its objective of reducing smoking rates.”