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KT&G Corporation is a Korea-based tobacco company which manufactures and sells several cigarette brands including, ESS, PINE, ZEST, CIMA, CARNNIVAL, RAISON, BOHEM, both in Korea and overseas. According to an article on YonHap news agency, following Philip Morris’s success with their own electronic device, the company has announced that it will soon launch it’s own ‘Heat not Burn’ device, with the product’s marketing campaign expected to start next September.

KT&G Corporation to launch it’s own ‘Heat not Burn’ device, with the product’s marketing campaign expected to start next September.
Philip Morris successfully launched their iQOS last May. “Philip Morris has invested about 3.4 trillion won since 2008 in developing a tobacco product that ‘doesn’t burn.’ While anti-smoking policy should of course continue to be implemented, we think as much that it’s our job as a tobacco company to create a less harmful product for those who wish to smoke,” said Chong Il-woo, the managing director of Philip Morris Korea, at a media briefing in Seoul back in May.

HnB products steadily rising on the market

The iQOS device works by heating tobacco leaves known as Heets. These refills which look like short cigarettes, must be inserted into the device and are heated it up once iQOS is turned on. These heat sticks are sold under the Marlboro brand for approximately the same price as their combustible counterparts.

Not surprisingly, the product has been well received, as smokers seek safer alternatives to cigarettes and/or effective cessation tools. “We are witnessing the growing popularity of iQOS, although it’s not been so long since its launch in South Korea,” said a spokesperson for Philip Morris Korea.

“We are witnessing the growing popularity of iQOS, although it’s not been so long since its launch in South Korea.” Spokesperson for Philip Morris Korea

British American Tobacco (BAT Korea) has also said it will follow suit by launching it’s Neostiks for BAT’s tobacco heating product, glo, in Korea next August. “Initial production of Neostiks in the Sacheon Factory is planned for export to Japan and for preparations for launching glo in Korea,” read BAT Korea’s website.

Differentiating between electronic and combustible cigarettes

Since unlike the US, South Korea categorizes e-cigarettes differently than their combustible counterparts, the devices will be levied at a lower tax rate than the 75% imposed on regular cigarettes. South Korea has been actively fighting smoking. Earlier this year the Ministry of Health and Welfare of South Korea, has successfully implemented a regulation that forces cigarette manufacturers to put graphic images of the harmful effects of smoking on cigarette packets.