British American Tobacco (BAT), the second largest contributor to the state budget, announced investments of EUR 1 billion in the Romanian economy through its three companies in the next five years. BAT’s operations on domestic market include, along with Ploiesti factory, a nationwide distribution company and a regional services firm.
“Romania is good place to investment, with well-trained people and the highest economic growth in the European Union in 2016, a growth to which we are proud we can contribute. Therefore, we want to continue the positive impact we have on the local economy through our long-term commitment, including the securing of over 2,000 jobs across the country, and creating others in the coming years. We plan to give the Romanian economy a EUR1 billion stimulus, through our companies,” Gemma Webb, CEO British American Tobacco stated in a press conference on Tuesday in front of Gov’t representatives and local authorities.
According to her, following this important investment in the local facility scheduled for 2017, the Ploiesti-based factory will become BAT group’s second largest in Europe and another 100 new jobs will be created.
On this occasion, Francisco Toso, the General Director of the British American Tobacco factory in Ploiesti said the unit he manages will start producing “glo iFuse Neopods” as of next year, a product currently made in the United Kingdom.
“As of 2017, Ploiesti – based factory output will increase by 20 percent, while exports will reach 56 percent of production,” Francisco Toso noted, adding that more than EUR 250 million have been invested so far in the production unit located near Bucharest and other EUR 100 million will be invested as of January 2017.
Moreover, BAT representative has said the company plans to test a new tobacco-based cigarette alternative in Japan next month.
Glo electronically heats tobacco enough to create an inhalable vapour. That vapour, according to BAT, has about 90 percent less toxicant than smoke. The temperature of glo and the Kent Neostiks that go with it is about 240 degrees Celsius, whereas combustion in traditional cigarettes takes place at over 800 degrees, Toso explained.
BAT exports now about half of its Romanian production to 35 countries including Japan, Brazil, Russia, UK, Denmark and Italy and the expansion will allow it sell about 56 percent of output abroad.
Considering the current contribution of EUR 1.64 billion, BAT will pay another EUR 8.2 billion to state budget in the next five years representing excise duties, VAT and other taxes.