The State Tobacco Monopoly Administration

The State Tobacco Monopoly Administration (STMA) is a government agency in China responsible for overseeing the tobacco industry. Established to regulate and control the production, distribution, and sale of tobacco products, the STMA ensures the implementation of national tobacco policies and standards. The State Tobacco Monopoly Administration (国家烟草专卖局) is a Chinese government agency responsible for national tobacco monopoly regulation. The two agencies, being one institution with two names, are co-located in the same office and sharing the same website. China Tobacco enjoys a legal monopoly in the country, accounting for 96% of cigarette sales in the country, and is the world’s largest manufacturer of tobacco products measured by revenues. It exports a small proportion of its production, mostly to Asian markets.

Key Functions:

  1. Regulation and Supervision:
    • The STMA enforces laws and regulations related to tobacco production, sales, and marketing to maintain order in the tobacco market.
  2. Monopoly Management:
    • The agency manages the state monopoly on tobacco, controlling the entire supply chain from cultivation to retail.
  3. Quality Control:
    • It sets quality standards for tobacco products to ensure consistency and safety for consumers.
  4. Research and Development:
    • The STMA supports research in tobacco cultivation, processing technologies, and the development of new tobacco products.
  5. Revenue Collection:
    • It oversees the collection of taxes and revenues generated by the tobacco industry, contributing significantly to national and local economies.
  6. Public Health:
    • While promoting economic interests, the STMA also addresses public health concerns by regulating product labeling, advertising, and implementing measures to reduce tobacco consumption.

Organizational Structure:

The STMA operates through various departments and local offices across China, working closely with the China National Tobacco Corporation (CNTC), the state-owned enterprise that controls the production and marketing of tobacco products.

Economic Impact:

The tobacco industry, under the STMA’s management, is a major contributor to China’s economy, providing significant tax revenues and employment opportunities. However, this economic benefit is balanced with the administration’s efforts to mitigate the health impacts of tobacco use.

In summary, the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration plays a crucial role in regulating and supporting China’s tobacco industry, ensuring compliance with national standards while balancing economic and public health objectives.