The Ministry of Finance is consulting on addressing unregulated tobacco in Ontario.
The OCSA will be participating in round tables and providing recommendations to the Ministry of Finance on ways to address illegal tobacco issues in Ontario.
The OCSA estimates that over one third of cigarette sales are unregulated and do not comply with federal and/or provincial laws. The Ontario government estimates that they lose up to $750 million in tax revenues every year as a result.
Contraband is also being fueled by the ever increasing manufacturer cost of the products thus sending more legal smokers looking for a cheaper alternative.
Discussions on tobacco also present an opportunity to explore regulations and increase use of vaping products.
The distribution and sale of untaxed, unregulated tobacco also has a public safety costs that attracts organized crime. The profits from unregulated tobacco are often used to fund other illegal activities.