Illegal cigarette trade  

 As a law-abiding, tax-paying citizen, I feel it is high time we started talking about the harmful implications of the illegal cigarette trade in Pakistan. It’s a matter of concern to know where these counterfeit cigarette brands come from and, even more importantly, who is benefiting from their distribution and sale. There are illegally sourced or manufactured cigarettes in every corner shop that are kept hidden behind counters and sold only to trusted acquaintances. I would like to know how or when it will be possible to eliminate these illegal threats to the wellbeing of our beloved nation’s economy.

It is interesting to know how much money these criminals owe to the government and to the people of Pakistan. I’m sure if they are cracked down on strategically, the tobacco mafias around the country will have no choice but to either close operations or start working legally and paying taxes. It is fundamental that we work hard to create the world we want to live in, and it starts with the economy.

AMMAR MUZAFFAR,

Karachi.

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