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Philip Morris Launches Anti-Smoking Advert

Philip Morris Launches Anti-Smoking Advert

Tobacco firm Philip Morris has placed an advertisement in some newspapers promoting its "ambition to stop selling cigarettes in the UK".

It is part of the company's drive to achieve a "smoke-free future", the BBC reports.

The owner of the Marlboro brand has also written to Prime Minister Theresa May asking to be allowed to print information about quitting and switching on its cigarette packs.

However, anti-smoking campaigners described the campaign as a "PR stunt".

The text of the advertisement runs: "Our New Year's Resolution: we're trying to give up cigarettes".

It goes on to encourage smokers to go to a new website containing information about giving up smoking or moving on to alternatives to tobacco.

It also says Philip Morris will:

Offer to support Local Authority cessation services where smoking rates are highest
Seek government approval to insert, directly into its cigarette packs, information on quitting and on switching;
Expand the availability of new, alternative products in the UK.

The advert says the company has spent £2.5bn on develop smoke-free alternatives. Philip Morris markets several alternatives to cigarettes, including, including a heated tobacco product, Iqos.

Asked why, if Philip Morris was so keen to go smoke-free, it did not simply stop making cigarettes and switch over to alternative production, a company spokesman told the BBC: "We are trying to go smoke free as fast as we can. If we just stopped selling cigarettes tomorrow, others would sell them in our place.

"In the UK, smokers are well aware of the dangers of smoking but what they want is more information about their options to quit smoking or switch."



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