APTRA Releases Latest Advocacy Update And Continues Its Industry Support On COVID-19

  • 16 July 2020

Singapore 16 July 2020 APTRA’s latest Advocacy Report and Heat Map published today identifies the key current regulatory challenges across Asia Pacific that have the greatest impact on the duty free and travel retail industry. The report is the second quarterly report in a new service first launched exclusively to members in April 2020.

While the majority of government relief measures for COVID-19 in aviation are weighted towards airports and airlines, APTRA is prioritising its focus on formal recognition of the travel retail industry’s dynamics as Sunil Tuli, President of APTRA explains.

“APTRA is relentless in our mission to ensure our industry voice is properly considered in relief and stimulus measures and also in any proposed operational changes from government that could impact sales, for example carry-on luggage restrictions. Advocacy is a huge task in Asia Pacific – without a regional body such as the EU in Europe, we have to target every government on an individual basis. We are grateful for the support of members who have already added their political influence and we encourage others to join forces with us. We’re all fighting the same battle and a unified industry voice is by far the single most impactful strategy for success – as demonstrated by ICAO giving its support for the reopening of retail in their guidelines published in June.”

With so much government attention focused on managing the COVID-19 crisis, the pace of policy development has been slower than reported in Q1. However, alongside its focus on COVID-19, APTRA is keeping a watchful eye on current and emerging policy movements in other areas of interest:

Indonesia: Following the implementation of a single-use plastic ban in Bali in 2019, Jakarta has imposed a city- wide ban on single-use plastic by July 2020. This issue is expected to continue in several APAC countries.
Taiwan: Its Health Ministry released its amendment to Tobacco Hazards Prevention and Control Act for 60-day public consultation. Proposals include enlarging graphic health warning from 35 to 85% ,in addition to a Tobacco flavour ban.
Singapore: Its sugar regulation moves from policy formulation to policy adoption stage across high sugar content packaged drinks.
Singapore: Tobacco plain packaging regulation became effective & was implemented 1 July 2020.
• Looking ahead to the second half of 2020, policy discussion continues to develop on track and trace in tobacco although the World Health Organisation has postponed its 2020 “Meeting of Parties” until November 2021 to discuss its Protocol To Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products.

For members of APTRA, this unique advocacy report on policy issues and threats across the region is a valuable tool that many companies do not have the resource to facilitate themselves. Christina Oliver, Executive Director of APTRA concludes. “ If you are not yet a member of APTRA, now more than ever is the time to be part of a proactive collective industry body.”

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