Intense fight against the grey market continues

In line with its strategy for the fight against organised crime, the government of the Republic of Serbia organised a public mass disposal of 80 tonnes of confiscated cigarettes of unknown origin and quality at the Nikola Tesla A Thermoelectric power plant at Obrenovac on Friday, May 17.

The Yugoslav Association of Importers and Distributors of Tobacco released a press statement on the event, offering full acknowledgement and support to the work of the Serbian government and the Ministry of Finance and Economy in the fight against the black market for cigarettes.

„We believe that today’s disposal of cigarettes seized from the black market is a great step forward in the fight against illegal trade in cigarettes, and strong evidence of the determination of the government and its Ministries to tackle this problem in the proper way. We believe that through these measures, the government and the Ministry of Finance and Economy have shown both vigour and consistency in the fight against the black market.“

Minister of Finance and Economy Bozidar Djelic said that 357 tonnes of illegally imported cigarettes worth E15 million have been seized over the past year, and that last year alone twice as many packs of cigarettes were excised than in the previous five years put together.

Upon the seizure of some 7 million excise stamps in Subotica on May 19, Minister Djelic congratulated officers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MUP) on the success of their work. He also announced that
cigarette excise stamps would in the future be printed on much higher quality paper, and will be delivered exclusively to the tobacco producers. The introduction of a computer network for more precise tracking of excise stamps is also planned.