BAT closing its Chile operations after law changes

    British American Tobacco has said that it is closing its operations in Chile because of changes to the country’s tobacco law, according to a story by Richard Craver for The Associated Press, published in the Winston-Salem Journal.

    BAT said it objected to changes that included banning additives, such as menthol, and adding to cigarette packs bigger warnings about the risks of smoking.

    The Chilean unit of the company called the toughening of Chile’s tobacco law ‘unconstitutional and arbitrary’.

    ‘We deeply regret what has been approved by the Senate, a decision that will affect thousands of Chileans who were working legally and responsibly for more than 100 years,’ the company said in a statement.

    The company, which has operated in Chile since 1909, says it will start its phase-out by laying off 20 percent of its nearly 1,000 employees.