Reprinted from www.corpwatch.org
Uruguay has presented a 500 page document to defend itself against an international lawsuit challenging the country's tough tobacco packaging regulations. The claim was brought by Philip Morris, the global tobacco giant, at the World Bank's International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in Washington DC.
Philip Morris filed the original complaint on February 19, 2010, claiming that Uruguay's laws were a violation of a 1991 bilateral investment treaty between Uruguay and Switzerland. The company says that legal requirements that graphic warnings about the health hazards of smoking must cover most of the surface area of cigarette packets have harmed the company's trademarks and profits.
"The large size of these warnings prevents us from effectively displaying our trademarks and goes beyond what could reasonably be considered appropriate to inform consumers of the well-established health risks of smoking," Morgan Rees, a spokesperson for Philip Morris, told Investment Arbirtation Reporter. "This is without precedent anywhere in the world."
On October 13, 2014, Paul Reichler, a lawyer with Foley Hoag, in Washington DC, responded on behalf of the Uruguayan government, citing the country's obligations under the World Health Organization’s 2005 Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.
See more at: http://www.opednews.com/articles/Uruguay-Presents-Defense-A-by-Corp-Watch-Health_Lawsuits_Tobacco-141112-871.html