Changes to Turkish tobacco regulations have removed a prohibition on exporting tobacco seeds under certain conditions, as well as introduce new registration and notification obligations for manufacturers of tobacco products. The Regulation Amending the Procedures and Principles Concerning Manufacture, Process, Domestic and Foreign Trade of Tobacco (“Amendment Regulation”) was published in Official Gazette number 29547 on 29 November 2015, entering into effect on the same date.

Significant changes introduced by the Amendment Regulation include:

  • The prohibition on exporting tobacco seeds is removed. Exports are subject to approval by the Tobacco and Alcohol Market Regulatory Authority (“Authority”) and by the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock (“Ministry”).
  • The holder of an authorization certificate to export tobacco seeds must provide information to the Authority about the export within three months of the export date.
  • The Authority must be notified if a Tobacco Export Conformity Certificate is obtained, but the export is not finalized or is renounced. Notifications must occur during January and July of each year, including whatever records and information the Authority deems necessary.
  • Under the Amendment Regulation, Authority permission must now be obtained to:
    • Export tobacco which will have its package changed.
    • Dispose of processed or non-processed tobacco which will not be traded.
  • Manufacturers should keep records and notify the Authority of certain information in June and December each year. The Amendment Regulation expands the scope of record keeping and notification obligations. It introduces a new notification requirement on manufacturers of tobacco products which have obtained a Tobacco Export Conformity Certificate. The form and contents of such records must be in compliance with the forms determined by the Authority. The records should include information about:
    • Imported tobacco.
    • Tobacco which is partially or completely subject to a change.
    • Tobacco whose import is not partially or totally finalized.
    • Tobacco whose import is cancelled.
    • Tobacco used in manufacture.
    • Imported tobacco that is sold domestically or abroad.

Please see this link for full text of the Amendment Regulation (only available in Turkish).