Tobacco Matters

We have for quite some time been trying to get answers from Revenue regarding what we considered to be an unusual statistic in their annual analysis of the illicit consumption survey.

The figure used by them for 2021 was that 8% of the total amount of cigarettes consumed in Ireland had been purchased outside the State without Irish Duties applied. This is a separate figure, and entirely different from the 13% of tobacco products that are purchased illegally in Ireland, the products having been smuggled, like those uncovered in Rosslare this week. (See Here)
As the previous year that the survey was carried out (2019) was 9% , we wondered how the figures were so alike given the travel restrictions that pertained throughout much of 2021; the answer

Download (PDF, 248KB)

given is that the Survey is carried out each year at the latter ( Q4) part and most travel restrictions were not in place. We are not entirely convinced the Answer provided stacks up with the facts, travel restrictions and usage was significantly lower in 2021. One area that Revenue are not prepared to consider, is the volume of Duty Free from the UK. We asked that they include a specific question in the Annual Survey but they are not so disposed.
It’s hard to quantify a problem unless you obtain the necessary data, perhaps the request would have brought up some uncomfortable truths!