Monday, June 14, 2010

Attack of the Marlboro Man

As reported in the June Viking magazine, Norway's Ministry of Finance excluded 17 tobacco companies from its Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), deeming the companies unethical. In addition, Norway also banned the displaying of tobacco products in stores. This obviously was the straw that broke the Camel's back.

Get it? See what I did there? Oh never mind.

Well, these turns of events have sparked something even larger than the U.S. Tobacco cases of the late 90's. Apparently Phillip Morris, maker of the popular Marlboro cigarette, is fighting back.

By suing Norway.

According to this article, Phillip Morris contends that the ban is unfair to consumers because they can’t see all of the available products, it restricts competition and contravenes Article 11 of the EEA agreement by limiting free movement of goods within the area.

As en ex-smoker I have mixed feelings about this whole situation, which I'll gladly keep to myself, however I am curious to see what the result it.

Any readers have a thought on the matter or want to speak out for either side? It's what the comment link is for!


rlkris said...


Andrew Holden said...

The EEA-agreement allows the participating countries to excuse certain products from the "freedom of movement" if they can present social or health related reasoning.
Norway already prohibits ads for alcohol and tobacco also in direct contravention of the treaty, but legal and accepted due to the above exception.