New Measures to Fight Tobacco Smuggling
On November 19, 2009, new measures to fight tobacco smuggling were added to the Tobacco Tax Act. Some of the measures are described below:
- A moratorium has been imposed on the issuance of manufacturer’s permits; no manufacturer’s permit has been issued since October 27, 2009.
- The Minister of Revenue can require that a person provide security as a condition for issuing a permit.
- Anyone who is in possession of tobacco manufacturing equipment must hold a permit and keep a register of the equipment.
- Municipalities can keep the amount of fines and costs imposed on consumers found guilty of having contraband tobacco in their possession when the offence is committed in their territories.
- Certain fines have been increased and new tax penalties have been imposed.
The purpose of these new measures is to exert greater control on the manufacturing, distribution, sale and consumption of tobacco products in Québec. Among other things, the measures allow Revenu Québec to make sure that the required tax is paid, to promote fair competition in the tobacco industry and to preserve the integrity of the Québec taxation system.