Production of fine cut tobacco has declined throughout most of the period under review, with the increase in excise duty for tobacco 'sticks' in 2008 especially damaging. As a result, consumption of smoking tobacco has fallen to 29g per person, marginal by international standards. Fine cut tobacco volumes are forecast to continue to be affected by growing restrictions on smoking, and price differentials respect cigarettes.
- The fine cut market is dominated by three suppliers: Rothmans, Benson and Hedges (RBH), a subsidiary of PMI; Imperial Tobacco Canada, a BAT subsidiary; and JTI-Macdonald, a subsidiary of JTI. Since 2003 consumption has fallen away quite dramatically.
- Tax rises, growing illicit consumption and increased competition from value cigarettes are the main factors behind a collapse in official sales.
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