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Philip Morris chief lashes out at Hong Kong e-cigarette ban

Prohibitions are 'illogical' given tobacco health concerns

Banning next-generation cigarettes is "a very wrong thing to do because the alternative is to continue smoking," Philip Morris International CEO Andre Calantzopoulos said. (Photo by Ken Kobayashi)

TOKYO - Philip Morris International's chief executive has accused Hong Kong regulators of "illogical" behavior in proposing a ban on electronic alternatives to cigarettes as the world's largest tobacco company fights a widening backlash against devices it sees as key to winning over health-conscious consumers.

Andre Calantzopoulos told the Nikkei Asian Review that prohibiting so-called heat-not-burn devices like its IQOS and other electronic cigarettes is "a very wrong thing to do because the alternative is to continue smoking."

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