According to the Incidence Study of Illegal Cigarettes Consumption in Colombia 2021, carried out by the National Federation of Departments (FND), imports of contraband shrank by 1% due to stricter border controls put in place during 2020. This benefited the distribution of regulated merchandise to an extent, although overall illicit trade continued to rise in 2020 and 2021 as consumers sought out these products in response to high taxes and some smugglers succeeded in bypassing controls.
Cigarettes volume sales saw a sharp increase in 2021. This was driven by the easing of COVID-19 related restrictions, with consumers gaining easier access to cigarettes and having more occasions for smoking.
The competitive landscape in cigarettes remained extremely concentrated in 2021, with British American Tobacco strengthening its overall dominance, as its operations were not interrupted during the pandemic. With consumers trading down and a notable shift away from mid-priced brands, the player’s economy brand Rothmans strengthened its overall leadership and continued to represent a large proportion of its sales.
Volume sales of cigarettes are set to fall during the forecast period as the category resumes its historic trend. A decline in smoking prevalence will be the main driver of decline, which will itself be driven by rising consumer interest in health and wellness.
Having declined during 2021, the illicit trade in cigarettes will begin to recover during 2022, as Colombia’s land borders are open and international travel resumes at its normal pace. As was the case before the pandemic, the expansion of illicit trade will be driven by the fact that taxes on cigarettes in neighbouring countries are much lower than in Colombia.
The increasing popularity of e-vapour and heated tobacco products will adversely affect the performances of both the mid-price and premium price segments, while economy cigarettes is predicted to record steady volume growth due to further downtrading amongst price sensitive consumers who have been hit by the economic impact of measures imposed to curb the spread of COVID-19 and high inflation rates.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Cigarettes industry in Colombia with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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RETAIL SALES OF DUTY PAID CIGARETTES The definition of cigarettes for the purposes of this study is duty-paid, machine manufactured white-stick products. This does not exclude brands of cigarettes that do not use white paper but it is designed to exclude the volume of non-machine manufactured products such as bidis/beedis (India) and papirosy (Russia), and other smoking products made with tobacco but that either do not resemble cigarettes as recognised in the US or Europe, or those that are not machine manufactured. The exclusion of these products is intended to give a more accurate picture of the "true" market for cigarettes and cigars which has been distorted in official statistics and published reports because of the inclusion of hybrid products. NB Please note that due to its central importance and integration into the industry mainstream, Indonesia’s market data does include hand-rolled kreteks DUTY-FREE sales are excluded from retail sales, as are herbal cigarettes. ILLICIT TRADE CIGARETTES Not included in retail sales, but split out separately in volume terms only. Defined as non-duty paid cigarettes (includes smuggled & counterfeit/fake products combined). Legitimate cross-border sales are considered duty-paid. Sales arising from a foreign national purchasing cheaper cigarettes in bulk in a neighbouring country for personal use and exported back are attributed to the country where the purchase is made (e.g. bulk cigarette sales by British nationals in France are attributed to France).See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Cigarettes research and analysis database.
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