Although Romania joined the European Union in 2007, there remain areas where the country is struggling to align with its requirements. With regard to tobacco legislation, the law banning smoking in enclosed public places was only adopted in 2016, and was very controversial.
2018 witnessed a sudden change in fortunes for e-vapour products in Romania, with the category recording a decline in current value sales for the first time since its entry into the country. Although a small category, over the review period e-vapour products benefited from offering consumers an increasing range of open vaping devices and e-liquids, while also being viewed as a healthier alternative to cigarettes or an aid to help quit smoking.
The advertising of heated tobacco products was not regulated in any way in 2018. However, banners exhibited in areas of high traffic, such as subway stations in the capital city, aroused a reaction from the authorities.
Having pioneered heated tobacco and introduced it to Romania in 2017, Philip Morris continued to benefit hugely from the first mover advantage in 2018, with its Iqos tobacco heating device and HEETS heated tobacco sticks overwhelmingly dominating sales in their respective categories. Indeed, Philip Morris views heated tobacco as the future of the tobacco industry and so is heavily focusing on this category to drive its future growth.
With regard to next generation products, unlike Philip Morris, British American Tobacco, the clear leader in cigarettes, chose to enter e-vapour products via the launch of Glo iFuse, a hybrid electronic device which fuses tobacco heating and vaping technology. The company’s aim was for Glo iFuse to compete within e-vapour products as it was sold together with Kent Neopod capsules.
E-vapour products in 2018 continued to be completely dominated by open vaping systems, a category which is susceptible to strong fragmentation due to the rapid ongoing development of new devices and e-liquids. Nevertheless, the category continued to be led by Ritchy Group thanks to its strength in e-liquids via its Liqua brand.
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Discover the latest market trends and uncover sources of future market growth for the Smokeless Tobacco and Vapour Products industry in Romania with research from Euromonitor's team of in-country analysts.
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