British American Tobacco Nigeria, has responded to the report of African Tobacco Control Alliance, ATCA, saying the company has continued to adhere to the Tobacco Control Act and all relevant laws and regulations in the country where it operate.
BAT Nigeria, in a statement said the company is an organisation that is committed to high standards of corporate conduct which includes marketing of its products to adult consumers.
“We have strict, company-wide marketing principles in place to ensure that our products are marketed responsibly, in addition to adhering to the Tobacco Control Act and all relevant laws and regulations in the country where we operate.
We market and sell our tobacco products in an ethical manner and strictly adhere to our own self-imposed international marketing principles that govern, regulate and monitor our marketing approach within our controlled marketing universe. These marketing principles aim to prevent youth access and smoking at point of sale and discourage the sale of tobacco products near schools.
“They also strongly discourage the use of child labour at tobacco retail points to prevent minors from selling and/or promoting the use of tobacco products. We strictly monitor our trade partners with a view to ensuring we do not partner with anyone who engages under aged persons in the sale of our products and will continue to advocate and drive for compliance.”
The statement further stated that, “children are not and will never be our target market anywhere in the world. To this end, we have deployed and expended considerable time, strategies and effort in educating and encouraging our retailers and other end market sellers of our products, about the important role they play in preventing and stopping children from getting access to tobacco products.”
“During our self-audit, we noticed that there were areas of improvement which we are currently addressing with our partners. We will continue to collaborate with our partners such as suppliers, farmers, traders, etc. to ensure children are protected now and in the future.”