Tobacco giant Philip Morris will stop selling cigarettes in the United Kingdom within the next ten years, the international company’s chief revealed to UK-based online news media The Daily Mail on Sunday.
The decision means that iconic cigarette brand Marlboro will no longer be sold in the UK for the first time in over a century.
Philip Morris’ boss Jacek Olczak told The Mail that the move is being put forward in an effort to phase out the smoking of traditional cigarettes in Britain. It is expected to encourage smokers to switch to smoking alternatives such as e-cigarettes, vapes, and heated tobacco devices.
“I want to allow this company to leave smoking behind. I think in the UK, ten years from now maximum, you can completely solve the problem of smoking,” said Olczak.
In reference to the Marlboro brand, Olczak said, “It will disappear. The first choice for consumers is they should quit smoking. But if they don’t, the second-best choice is to let them switch to the better alternatives.”
The UK government plans for Britain to be ‘smoke-free’ by 2030. The blueprint also includes plans to diminish cigarette smoking among different age groups.