Thursday, October 17, 2013

Starting a Tobacco Company in Romania

The tobacco industry is one of the most powerful industries in the world.  Romania exported raw and processed tobacco worth 155, 4 millions of Euros in the first 4 months of the year, an increased number compared to the same period of time last year. And these are only the values of exports this year.
For a Romanian company to operate in the tobacco industry it needs to have as object of activity the following NACE Code 1200 “manufacture of tobacco products”.
For the cultivation and marketing of raw tobacco, tobacco manufacturers can organize in producer groups. The producer group should include a number of members, individuals and legal entities, which can produce a minimum quantity of 25 tons of raw tobacco quota certificate, and in isolated regions a culture of a minimum amount representing 10 tons of raw tobacco quota certificates.
The state authority that recognizes producer groups is the Ministry of Agriculture Food and Forestry. This same authority is the one to authorize the first processors of raw tobacco. In order to obtain the authorization from the Ministry of Agriculture Food and Forestry the first processors of raw tobacco need to submit a number of documents including: request for authorization, copy of the certificate of registration at the Trade Registry, the estimate of contracts signed with tobacco growers farmers on different varieties and regions etc.
Once authorized the first processor of raw tobacco has number of obligations among witch: directly notify the authorities regarding tobacco policies on any change in the documentation submitted for authorization in within 15 days after the change, use the authorization only under the conditions and for the purposes for which it was issued and that the period of validity; respond to requests from the competent authority regarding the communication of information on tobacco to the European Commission; to comply with the conditions existing at the time of the granting of first processing, to allow access authority to perform official controls etc.
It is important to obtain the authorization because the sale of raw tobacco can only be made to authorized first processing units, based on a type of contract approved by the Ministry of Agriculture Food and Forestry.
The production of cigarettes is strictly regulated by Romanian law so: Cigarettes marketed or manufactured in Romania will have a content of 10 mgof tar / cigarette, 1 mg ofnicotine / cigarette, 10 mgof carbon monoxide / cigarette.
Manufacturers or importers of tobacco products shall compile a dossier of the product contains the following: a list of all ingredients used in the manufacture of tobacco products and their quantities, the list will be drawn up in order of decreasing amount of each ingredient in the product, statement as to why the use of ingredients in the  tobacco products listed with indication of the category and function, the manufacturer or importer available toxicological data on ingredients, and with special reference to their effect on health noting any effect of inducing addiction, the content of tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide, in the case of cigarettes.
Another thing that must be taken into consideration when it comes to the marketing of tobacco products is that all forms of advertising on tobacco products must carry warning inscriptions in Romanian;  the general warning will be  : "Tobacco seriously damages health".
When advertising tobacco products by advertisement the warning must meet the following conditions:
1. The text of the general warning will have to cover 50% of the screen and be written black, bold on a white background;
2.  The warning will have to appear on the screen for two seconds;
3. The warning will have to appear on the display at the end of the advertisement.
Any tobacco product imported from a Member State of the European Union in Romania is accepted if the product has been lawfully produced or marketed in the Member State of origin and provides an equivalent level of protection.

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