194258 Transnational tobacco company foreign investment in Pakistan: Models and policy implications

Tuesday, November 10, 2009: 2:30 PM

Joshua Yang, PhD, MPH , Department of Health Science, California State University, Fullerton, Fullerton, CA
Background: Transnational tobacco companies have had a presence in Pakistan for over 50 years, adopting different foreign direct investment (FDI) approaches to penetrating the cigarette market.

Methods: To explore the models and impacts of transnational tobacco company FDI in Pakistan, approximately 200 previously secret tobacco industry documents were identified and analyzed. A historical case study approach was used categorize themes and summarize findings.

Results: British American Tobacco (BAT) established Pakistan Tobacco Company (PTC), a wholly owned subsidiary, in 1947, making it one of the first foreign companies in Pakistan. Through its subsidiary, BAT directly influenced the pricing and marketing strategy of cigarettes, engaged in lobbying of government officials, and dictated PTC's manufacturing processes. Philip Morris (PM) entered the Pakistani market in August 1967, obtaining minority ownership interests in Premier Tobacco Industries Ltd (PTI). As a minority owner until 2007, PM was limited to providing technical assistance on manufacturing and collecting dividends on its investments and royalties from its licensed brands.

Conclusions: Foreign direct investment models adopted by transnational tobacco companies have differential effects on the level and type of involvement companies have on tobacco-related policy in Pakistan including cigarette marketing and political lobbying. As FDI proceeds as a key development strategy, investment approaches used by transnational companies should be monitored and addressed by the public health community.

Learning Objectives:
Explain differences in transnational tobacco company foreign investment strategies Evaluate the effects different foreign direct investment strategies have for international trade policies Develop public health approaches to counter the impact of tobacco industry foreign direct investment

Keywords: Developing Countries, Tobacco Industry

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am conducting primary research on tobacco industry activities in developing countries as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of California, San Francisco
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.