Sikh newsagent in tobacco talks with Health Minister
A Birmingham businessman was among a contingent of newsagents who met Health Minister Gilliam Merron to explain the difficulties small retailers would face if the Government introduced a ban on in-shop tobacco displays.
Parminder Singh of Haybarnes Stores in Haybarnes Road, Haymills, is national vice president of the National Federation of Retail Newsagents (NFRN), whose representatives told the Minister there was no proof that a display ban would stop young people smoking.
The federation said the proposed ban would hurt small businesses more severely than supermarkets and suggested there were other measures that could be taken to reduced smoking by young people, particularly by educational means.
The NFRN said the Minister had listened closely to its concerns and had conceded, it said, that she had not appreciated that the ban would drives sales from the corner shops to supermarkets.
It said she had agreed to “speak to counterparts in other countries where display bans had been introduced” and to work closely with the NFRN in future.
The 18,000-strong federation has asked for the time limit for changes to be extended from 2013 to 2015.
Other NFRN representatives at the meeting included National President Suleman Khonat.
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