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Tobacco: Smuggling

Question for Treasury

UIN 94724, tabled on 23 November 2022

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps his Department is taking to include Trading Standards officers in the HMRC with the power to fine retailers for selling illicit tobacco products.

Answered on

28 November 2022

Trading Standards officers are not part of HMRC. They are a separate local government service.

However, HMRC works very closely with TS to tackle illicit tobacco. HMRC introduced legislation for tougher sanctions to tackle illicit tobacco sales in Finance Act 2022 including a new civil penalty of up to £10,000 for serious breaches. The new sanctions will take the innovative approach of HMRC and Trading Standards (TS) both working together to enforce them. Secondary legislation will be introduced next year setting out the detail on how the sanctions will operate.

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