Plain packaging is firmly back on the international agenda, with Honduras joining Ukraine in pushing the World Trade Organisation to set up a dispute resolution panel over the worlds most ridiculous tobacco control measure.
Tobacco producing nations, including the Dominican Republic and Cuba, argue that plain packaging laws create illegal obstacles to world trade.
Australia’s obsession with infantilising smokers has seen Canberra and the High Court bluntly refusing to acknowledge that preventing an entire industry from branding its products is a plain infringement of intellectual property.
Australia has so far blocked attempts by Honduras and Ukraine to begin dispute resolution proceedings through the WTO, but their opportunities to ignore the issue have run out.
Meanwhile, noone can find any evidence that even suggests plain packaging has pushed smokers to quit, or prevented people from taking up smoking.
All they can show is plain packaging makes smoking slightly less enjoyable for people who already smoke.
Speaking of revolutionaries who love social planning, Cuba has been pushed to begin WTO dispute resolution procedures for the first time in their nation’s history.
Yes, Australia’s getting a lesson in free trade courtesy of communists.
It’s no wonder – cigars are commonly packaged individually, so manufacturing plain packaging solely for the Australian market is just too expensive for many suppliers.
Retailers have already been forced to drop brands who can’t afford to redesign their entire product packaging just for Australia’s nanny state.