After a slight improvement in 2011 in Argentina, tobacco use dropped again in 2012. In the first quarter cigarettes showed a quite high growth, which stopped in the second quarter, and declined in the third and fourth quarters. This reflects general economic activity in Argentina in 2012. It is the result of the implementation of stricter smoking ban in the second half of the year.
Despite the drop in use of cigarettes in 2012, the sale of menthol cigarettes showed a record growth. Smokers have very quickly accepted cigarettes with menthol flavour, and tobacco companies have launched many premium, average-price and low-price cigarette brands. Best newcomers of 2012 are Lucky Strike Click & Roll, Marlboro Ice Blast. Switch Dunhill and Viceroy.
Since 2011 tobacco makers have adapted to new business enviroment. For example, from 2012, tobacco companies must include images and warnings of the danger of tobacco use on the packs of tobacco products. However, local tobacco companies, demanded to prolong the deadline because they had a lot of packaging stock.
The Argentinian government met their requirement and extended the deadline to October 2012. In 2012, the government made more severe restrictions to imports to keep the balance of trade surplus which seriously impacted cigars. This made tobacco companies select more carefully the products to be imported.
In 2013 there were made changes in cigarettes composition. Smoking ban imposes that cigarettes should not contain more than 1 milligram of nicotine, 10 milligrams of carbon monoxide and 10 milligrams of tar.
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