By Maitane Sardon
Philip Morris International Inc. (PM) said Thursday that smoke-free products represented 13.8% of its total net revenues in 2018, as it works toward its goal of replacing cigarettes with "less harmful products" such as e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products.
The company, facing increasing pressure from investors due to the negative impacts of cigarettes on people's health, said it dedicated 92% of its research and development budget to developing smoke-free products in 2018.
Philip Morris said 6.6 million of its consumers had stopped smoking and switched to one of its heated tobacco products at the end of 2018. It aims to reduce the number of cigarette smokers by 55 million by 2025.
Around 60% of its global commercial expenditure was dedicated to the commercialization of smoke-free products in 2018, it said.
However, the company added that smoke-free products are not an alternative to stopping smoking and the best choice for consumers concerned about the health risks of smoking is to quit.
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