香煙走私乃為一重要的公共健康議題，它不但刺激菸草消費與日俱增，也破壞了菸草的管制條例。於眾多新興的菸草市場中，中國不僅是眾所競求的最終戰利品，同時也被認為擁有世界上最嚴重的香煙走私問題。之前的研究顯示，英美菸草公司（British American Tobacco, 簡稱BAT）於亞洲與前蘇聯地區參與了此項不法行為。
Cigarette smuggling is a major public health issue, stimulating increased tobacco consumption and undermining tobacco control measures. China is the ultimate prize among tobacco’s emerging markets, and is also believed to have the world’s largest cigarette smuggling problem. Previous work has demonstrated the complicity of British American Tobacco (BAT) in this illicit trade within Asia and the former Soviet Union.
This paper analyses internal documents of BAT available on site from the Guildford Depository and online from the BAT Document Archive. Documents dating from the early 1900s to 2003 were searched and indexed on a specially designed project database to enable the construction of an historical narrative. Document analysis incorporated several validation techniques within a hermeneutic process. This paper describes the huge scale of this illicit trade in China, amounting to billions of (United States) dollars in sales, and the key supply routes by which it has been conducted. It examines BAT’s efforts to optimise earnings by restructuring operations, and controlling the supply chain and pricing of smuggled cigarettes.
Our research shows that smuggling has been strategically critical to BAT’s ongoing efforts to penetrate the Chinese market, and to its overall goal to become the leading company within an increasingly global industry. These findings support the need for concerted efforts to strengthen global collaboration to combat cigarette smuggling.
資金贊助：本研究由美國國家衛生研究院國家癌症協會（National Cancer Institute of the United States National Institutes of Health）（授權合約號碼為R01 CA91021–01）資金贊助。為建立英美菸草公司文獻資料庫（BAT Document Archive），作者亦自英國衛爾康信託會（Wellcome Trust）、加拿大衛生部（Health Canada）與英國癌症研究中心（Cancer Research UK）獲得資金贊助。資金贊助者毋須負擔研究設計、資料蒐集與分析、公開或出版的決策或預備手稿之任何責任。
Funding: This research is supported by funding from the National Cancer Institute of the United States National Institutes of Health (grant number R01 CA91021–01). The authors also received funding from the Wellcome Trust, Health Canada, and Cancer Research UK for the creation of the BAT Document Archive. The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.
競業同行：KL與JC的合作對象為加州大學舊金山校區（University of California San Francisco），以及Guildfor資料庫計畫（Guildford Archiving Project）（英美菸草公司文獻資料庫為其所創立）中的梅約醫學中心（Mayo Clinic）。作者自洛克菲勒基金會（Rockefeller Foundation）及英國癌症研究中心（Cancer Research UK）獲得對菸草文獻研究之資金贊助。JC乃為國際菸草與健康機構（International Agency on Tobacco and Health）中未支薪的董事會成員。
Competing Interests: KL and JC collaborated with the University of California San Francisco and the Mayo Clinic in the Guildford Archiving Project, which created the BAT Document Archive. The authors have received funding for tobacco document research from the Rockefeller Foundation and Cancer Research UK. JC is an unpaid board member of the International Agency on Tobacco and Health.
學術編輯：美國加州大學之Thomas E. Novotny
Academic Editor: Thomas E. Novotny, University of California, United States of America
Received: September 23, 2005; Accepted: March 15, 2006; Published: July 18, 2006
縮寫：英美菸草公司（BAT）；英美菸草公司文獻資料庫（BATDA，British American Tobacco Documents Archive）；香港英美菸草公司（BATHK，British American Tobacco Hong Kong）；英國英美菸草公司與出口（BATUKE，British American Tobacco United Kingdom and Export）；菸草控制框架公約（FCTC，Framework Convention on Tobacco Control）；遠東銷售單位（FESU，Far East Sales Unit）；合資企業（JV，joint venture）；菲利普莫里斯煙草公司（PM，Philip Morris）；中華人民共和國（PRC，People’s Republic of China）；跨國菸草公司（TTC，transnational tobacco company）
Abbreviations: BAT, British American Tobacco; BATDA, British American Tobacco Documents Archive; BATHK, British American Tobacco Hong Kong; BATUKE, British American Tobacco United Kingdom and Export; ; FCTC, Framework Convention on Tobacco Control; FESU, Far East Sales Unit; JV, joint venture; PM, Philip Morris; PRC, People’s Republic of China; TTC, transnational tobacco company
* To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
資料引用：Lee K, Collin J著(2006)，〈未來之鑰〉：英美菸草公司與中國境內的香煙走私，見《公眾科學圖書館之線上醫學開放式期刊》3(7): e228
Citation: Lee K, Collin J (2006) “Key to the Future”: British American Tobacco and Cigarette Smuggling in China. PLoS Med 3(7): e228
Smoking tobacco kills about 5 million people around the world every year, and according to the World Health Organization, half of the people who smoke will eventually die as a result. The habit is in decline in most of the world’s richer nations, but it is growing in developing countries. Governments can control consumption, and raise substantial tax revenues, by levying high taxes on tobacco. However, this is undermined when tobacco is smuggled into the country and sold illegally. Smuggling makes cigarettes more affordable, thus stimulating consumption, and undermines efforts to reduce smoking rates.
British American Tobacco (BAT) is one of the largest international tobacco companies. Following a legal case in the United States, millions of pages of BAT internal documents (dating back to the early 1900s) have been made public. They are held in a depository in the United Kingdom, and most can now be seen online.
Researchers have already undertaken wide-ranging studies of these documents and have drawn conclusions about the way BAT has sought to enter emerging markets throughout the world.
Why Was This Study Done?
先前發表的研究結論指出，英美菸草公司「共謀」進行大規模的煙草走私，此舉在文件中並委婉地以「運送」（transit）、「一般交易」（general trade，GT）、「關稅未付」（duty not paid，DNP）與「自由市場」（free market）等字眼出現。本研究著重於中國境內的菸草走私行為，而一般咸信該地區為世界上煙草走私問題最嚴重的國家。由於具有龐大的人口、極為普遍的抽煙習慣，與急速攀升的經濟成長，中國對於英美菸草公司及其它菸草公司來說，是一個關鍵的市場。中國若能發展有效的菸草控制政策，將成為促進全球健康的龐大契機之一。國家菸草專賣局（State Tobacco Monopoly Administration）乃是唯一合法於中國境內進行煙草買賣交易的單位。
Previously published studies have concluded that BAT has been “complicit” in large-scale cigarette smuggling, described in documents by the euphemisms “transit,” “general trade” (“GT”), “duty not paid” (“DNP”), and “free market.” This study focuses on such activities in China, which is believed to have the world’s biggest tobacco smuggling problem. China is a key market for BAT and other tobacco companies because of the size of its population, high smoking prevalence, and rapidly growing economy. The development of effective tobacco control policy in China constitutes one of the greatest opportunities to advance global health. The State Tobacco Monopoly Administration is the only agency legally allowed to trade in tobacco in China.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The authors have put together an account of the company’s trading in China in the period from 1986 to 1999. They begin by describing the scale on which tobacco was smuggled into China and the main supply routes through which tobacco entered the country. They found evidence that smuggling increased considerably during the period.
The researchers found that BAT’s own documents describe the company’s efforts to improve its earnings from China by restructuring operations and controlling the supply chain—that is, how cigarettes are manufactured and legally exported, are handled by various “agents” or middlemen, and then are sold illicitly as contraband. The title of this article is taken from one BAT document that states that exports from Hong Kong to China are the “key to the future” of the company’s planned growth. The researchers say that this can be taken to mean smuggling, and that BAT’s documents indicate that the company benefited from, encouraged, and attempted to control the smuggling of tobacco into China.
BAT has stated publicly that it does not approve of smuggling. However, from the researchers’ analysis of the information in the internal papers, they conclude that “the documents demonstrate that contraband has been a hugely profitable and integral part of BAT operations in China over the past two decades.” They estimate that the value of the illicit trade amounts to billions of (United States) dollars and go on to say that “for the Chinese government, this illicit trade undermined restrictions on imports, represented an enormous loss of tax revenue, and stimulated demand for premium brand cigarettes.” The researchers argue that action should be taken internationally to reduce tobacco smuggling.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at https://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0030228.
• Most of the documents used in this paper can be found at the British American Tobacco Documents Archive created by public health researchers (the Web site also contains useful information on tobacco document research)
• The Tobacco Free Initiative, based at the World Health Organization, provides information on the global scale of the tobacco problem, and about efforts to combat the situation
許多國家皆有全國性的拒煙組織；英國慈善機構「反煙與健康組織」（Action on Smoking and Health）提供有用的組織名單。
• Many countries have national anti-smoking organizations; the United Kingdom charity Action on Smoking and Health has a useful list of these
關於吸煙危害個人健康的資訊以及戒煙的建議皆可由美國家庭醫生協會（American Academy of Family Physicians）與國民保健服務直線（NHS Direct）（英國之國家健康保險服務）的網站取得。
• Information about the dangers of smoking to personal health and advice on giving up the habit are available from the Web sites of the American Academy of Family Physicians and NHS Direct (United Kingdom National Health Service)