Change to marks identifying legal cigarettes to take place by March 1, 2013
All cigarettes sold in Singapore must bear a revised identification mark by March 1 next year.
Currently, the letters "SDPC" - Singapore Duty-Paid Cigarette - are printed on the cigarette stick. The new mark will add a series of vertical bars around the stick.
The revised mark will help to "visibly differentiate" between duty-paid cigarettes and contraband ones, said Singapore Customs in a statement on Thursday. This will aid in the agency's operations around the island to curb the selling, buying and possession of contraband cigarettes, it said.
Cigarettes bearing the new "SDPC" mark will be allowed for sale from this Saturday to give manufacturers and retailers more time to get used to the change. But from March next year, all cigarettes without the new mark will be deemed illegal and duty-unpaid.