Fighting tobacco-smuggling through regional cooperation

        The fight against tobacco-smuggling will intensify as a result of an agreement to establish  a regional mechanism for exchanging information on illicit cigarette shipments.  This was the key result of the June meeting  of Task Force Tobacco which operates under EUBAM’s aegis.

        This meeting was unique as, for the first time, representatives of Customs Administrations from  Belarus, Georgia and Lithuania joined the Task Force meeting to share their experience with colleagues  from Hungary, Poland, Romania, Moldova, Ukraine, OLAF and SELEC.

        Information exchange is crucial for identifying new trends and routes in tobacco-smuggling and working out strategies for counteracting them.  Illegal activities such as tobacco-smuggling are losing many millions of euros from the budgets of regional states.