In 2022, Philip Morris, Japan Tobacco receive over $15B revenues in Russia - expert

In 2022, Philip Morris, Japan Tobacco receive over $15B revenues in Russia - expert

In 2022, tobacco companies Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International received $7.9 billion and $7.4 billion in revenue from the sale of their products in Russia.

Dmytro Kupyra, executive director of the NGO Zhyttia (lit. Life) announced this at Ukrinform.

"According to the Kyiv School of Economics, in 2022, Philip Morris became the first company to receive the largest revenue among all companies in Russia, and Japan Tobacco was the second. Accordingly, the first company received $7.9 billion in revenue, and the other, $7.4 billion," he said.

The expert emphasized that the lion's share of the companies' revenue is taxes that will be paid to the Russian budget.

"Thus, the Russian government will be able to use them or is already using them to wage war against Ukraine, including attacks on peaceful cities of Ukraine," Kupyra added.

In his turn, Andrii Pozniak, expert at the National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP), reminded that the NACP has already added Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International to the list of international sponsors of war.

"I would like to note that our instrument of war sponsors is a reputational one. That is, it is not a sanction. We understand that in today's world, a multinational corporation's brand is all they have. Our task is not to punish business but to help them choose the path of integrity, the path of socially responsible business and democracy," the NACP representative explained.

He also said that 36 international companies have already been included in the list.

Read also: Heineken sells its assets in Russia

"How can one get out of this list of war sponsors? First, the company must condemn Russian war of aggression against Ukraine. Secondly, the company must stop doing business in Russia or stop cooperating with Russia. Thirdly, the company must present a clear plan with specific dates for its gradual withdrawal from Russia. This should be officially stated, it should be guarantees, both verbal and written," Pozniak stated.

At the same time, Lada Bulakh, a member of the Servant of the People parliamentary faction, emphasized that adding Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International to the register of international sponsors of war is a logical step for our country "not in the context of fighting the harmful effects of tobacco but in the context of overcoming and bringing our victory closer."

"Over the past year, these two tobacco companies have earned over $15 billion in profits alone. An excise tax was paid on each pack of cigarettes, which means that these companies are active participants in financing the war in Ukraine through their economic activities in the aggressor country," the MP noted.

Read also: NACP adds Alibaba Group Holding Limited to list of war sponsors

Bulakh said that there was information that Philip Morris International intends to build a new plant in Lviv, investing $30 million.

"To me, it sounds as cynical as possible: by earning and paying excise taxes in the aggressor country, the manufacturer is trying to expand production and sales of its products in Ukraine," she stated.

Bulach emphasized that the Ukrainian government should respond decisively by stopping the company's investments in the Ukrainian economy.

"We have to make a decision and ban any development, and possibly distribution, of the products of these two tobacco companies in Ukraine," she summarized.

As Ukrinform reported, the NACP has added Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International, the world's leading tobacco companies, to the list of international sponsors of war, as they continue to do business in Russia.

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