Illegal trade in tobacco products falls to 11.3 pct of total sales

Finance Minister Teresa Czerwińska on Friday at a press conference at a border crossing with Belarus in Kuźnica. Artur Reszko/PAP

In 2018, the grey economy in terms of tobacco products trade shrank to 11.3 pct of total sales from 19 pct in 2015, said Finance Minister Teresa Czerwińska on Friday at a press conference at a border crossing with Belarus in Kuźnica.

The minister pointed to the activities of the National Revenue Administration (KAS) at the borders, which according to her, are proof of the tightening of the tax rules.

As she stated, last year, 288 million illegal cigarettes were intercepted at the border, which translates into a potential depletion of budget revenues by approximately PLN 114 million (EUR 23.5 mln).

Also seized were 226 tonnes of tobacco and dried tobacco, with an estimated value of PLN 107 million (EUR 24.9 mln), which translates into a potential budget depletion of PLN 85 million (EUR 19.8 mln).

"These figures testify to the tightening of the (tax – PAP) system," said Czerwińska. She added that the heroes of these efforts are the customs officers at the borders and the employees of the tax office