PM appeals to China's fashionable young

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BEIJING -- U.S. cigarette maker Philip Morris is courting public disapproval with the launch of a promotion offering Marlboro branded sportswear in return for empty packs of its cigarettes.

It is running the sales promotion in 10 large department stores in the Chinese capital of Beijing.

Foreign tobacco manufacturers which are banned from advertising their cigarette brands on TV or in print attempt to spread their brand message through other means, but often meet with criticism for doing so.

Earlier this year, BAT's 555 launched a campaign in Hangzhou, capital city of Zhejiang Province, to encourage local peo- ple to exchange several appointed Chinese cigarette brands for the 555 brand, causing outrage in the media.

This latest move by Marlboro aims to be particularly attractive to young people interested in fashion. The Marlboro sports- wear gifts include pure cotton T-shirts, caps, watches and all-weather jackets.

Copyright December 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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