The National Federation of Retail Newsagents (NFRN) has criticised the tenfold increase in tobacco licensing fees, which will be applied equally to large supermarket chains at the same rate as a small corner shop.
The fee will be raised from €50 to €500 and will inadvertently aid tobacco smugglers, according to the retail trade association.
Commenting on the news, NFRN Ireland President Joe Sweeney said: “It is a grossly unfair imposition on smaller retailers who are already hugely compliant with all tobacco regulations as HSE monitoring confirms.
This massive increase in registration fees will push some retailers out of the tobacco business entirely; costing jobs and leaving the market open for illicit traders to fill."
Mr. Sweeney said that the new charge is a perverse and counter-productive policy decision which will generate just €5 million and potentially lead to further job losses in an already battered retail sector.
© 2013 - Checkout Magazine by Genna Patterson