The mystery of how SA’s cigarette ‘exports’ soared after lockdown
Historically, the majority of illicit cigarettes in SA came from Zimbabwe, but in recent years this has changed, with a large portion of the illicit market now coming from local manufacturers
It’s clear that the lockdown ban has resulted in the illicit trade in cigarettes spiking dramatically.
It marks a grim reversal of gains. Back in 2013, 26% of cigarettes on the SA market were illicit, but the SA Revenue Service (Sars) managed to bring this down to a respectable 17% in 2014. But as Sars’s capacity was weakened, illicit trade again surged to a massive 35% in 2018...