The National Federation of Retail Newsagents Ireland (NFRN Ireland) has criticised Minister for Children & Youth Affairs James Reilly, saying he has 'overstepped the mark' by announcing that Irish legislation for plain packaging will be at the Dáil Health Committee “in the next few weeks."
NFRN Ireland said that Ireland’s plans for plain packaging are currently 'bogged down in the European Commission', adding that the Department of Health has still not responded to the European Commission in relation to objections lodged by several EU member states.
“As ever, Minister Reilly views plain packaging as a convenient means of boosting his own profile by attempting to piggy back on press coverage of the UK government's decision. Minister Reilly’s announcement shows scant regard for the European Commission review process and his own Cabinet colleagues,” NFRN Ireland's Deirdre Drennan said.
“The British plans offer the Irish government a perfect opportunity to wait and see what happens in the UK when plain packaging is introduced. The evidence from Australia is that since plain packaging was introduced two years ago smoking rates are unchanged and illicit trade has soared.”
An Amárach Research survey from November 2014 found that 62% in Ireland support NFRN Ireland’s call for postponement of plain packaging. It also showed that 73% believe plain packaging makes it easier to counterfeit tobacco products.
© 2015 - Checkout Magazine by Jenny Whelan