The world’s four largest international tobacco companies have forged a joint venture to fight the illegal trafficking of excisable consumer goods.
British American Tobacco, Imperial Tobacco Group, Japan Tobacco International and Philip Morris International , launched the Digital Coding & Tracking Association (DCTA), set up to promote international standards and digital technologies to help governments fight smuggling, counterfeiting and tax evasion.
The DCTA draws upon the industry’s collective expertise in securing international supply chains and developing sophisticated technologies to help distinguish genuine product from counterfeit.
Eliminating the illicit trade in cigarettes and alcohol requires international cooperation and smarter tools to help customs, border and tax officials tackle the criminals who carry it out, analysts say.
The DCTA offers a proven, secure and cost-effective solution, based on Codentify technology, for this purpose.
Codentify makes the leap into the digital age, offering quick and easy access through a mobile phone to all the information governments need to protect tax revenues, verify the legitimacy of shipments and meet international regulatory requirements, including the World Health Organisation’s protocol to eliminate the illicit trade in tobacco.
Pat Heneghan, spokesperson for the DCTA, said, in a statement that legal supply chains are global, complex and involve many parties.
When combined with the sophistication of the criminals and terrorists who traffic illicit goods, it means national governments must use the latest advances in technology to secure supply chains if they are to make any real progress in addressing the growing problem.
Heneghan concluded: “With governments looking at ways to secure tax revenues in these austere times and crack-down on the criminals that prosper from the black market, we are certain that the DCTA can provide the technologies and expertise needed to make a real impact.