17 Apr '12, 8am

Australia takes on big tobacco firms in court

Australia takes on big tobacco firms in court

SYDNEY: Australia has said it is confident of seeing off a court challenge on Tuesday by big tobacco firms over plain-packaging for cigarettes, in a test case being watched by governments around the world. Cigarette companies, led by British American Tobacco (BAT), are contesting the new law in a three-day hearing, claiming it infringes their intellectual property rights by banning brands and trademarks from packets. Attorney-General Nicola Roxon said the government believes it will successfully defend the legislation, which will see all cigarettes sold in the same drab olive-green packets from December 1. "We went into this policy and introduction of the legislation with our eyes open, knowing that tobacco companies have a history of litigation," Roxon told reporters outside the High Court in Canberra. "And we are very confident that we have taken careful advice, that we ...

Full article: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/health/view/119576...

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