July 1, 2020 ends the transition period for the circulation of cigarettes and drugs unmarked with Data Matrix codes in Russia. The national digital code marking system introduces full traceability of tobacco products – all market participants must completely switch to electronic document management in transactions with suppliers and customers.
More than 62 thousand companies were registered in the marking system. About 30% of the market for tobacco products came out of the shadows thanks to the introduction of a digital marking system.
98% of Russian and 83% of foreign manufacturers, almost all budgetary medical organizations, pharmacies, and distributors are connected to the drug labeling system.
The 2D digital code marking experiment in Russia began on January 15, 2018. From March 1, 2019, digital code marking became mandatory, and from July 1 of last year, the production of unmarked cigarettes stopped.
The fine for the sale of products without digital code marking is up to 300 thousand rubles (approximately $4.6 thousand).
Also, from July 1, 2020, it is forbidden to import and produce tobacco for hookah without the Data Matrix code.
Starting July 1, 2021, the sale of hookah tobacco and other tobacco products without labeling will be banned.
It is estimated that about 15% of the tobacco market in Russia was in the shade in 2019.