Wholesaling tobacco

Last updated: August 31, 2020

If you sell or offer to sell tobacco at wholesale in B.C., you must:

  1. Hold a wholesale dealer permit

  2. Report and pay security

  3. Sell only to registered tobacco retail authorization (TRA) holders or another registered wholesale dealer permit holder 

  4. Follow allocation limits when selling tax-exempt tobacco to registered exempt sale retail dealer permit holders

  5. Purchase, possess, store or sell tobacco according to B.C.’s tobacco marking program

  6. Follow the rules when selling, using or providing heated tobacco products

Tobacco wholesale dealer permit

To apply for a wholesale dealer permit:

  1. Complete and submit the Application for Appointment as a Wholesale Dealer or Cigar Wholesale Dealer (FIN 394) (PDF)

  2. Attach the following documents to your application:

  • A business plan (refer to the application form for more details)

  • Documentation from suppliers showing that a business relationship is established

  • Your Articles of Incorporation

  • An original copy of a criminal records check for all proprietors, partners or company directors

You will also need other federal permits or licences if you are manufacturing tobacco in Canada or importing tobacco into Canada.

If you sell or offer to sell taxable tobacco at retail, you must also hold a valid TRA with a unique number assigned to each retail location.

Bond deposit

New wholesale dealers may be required to post a bond prior to receiving authorization to sell tobacco at wholesale.

If you’re required to post a bond, it will be a condition for obtaining your permit and we will notify you of the bond amount. The amount of the bond will depend on your permit requirement. The maximum bond amount may be an amount equal to six times the tax that would normally be collected by you each month.

All or part of a bond deposit may be applied to unpaid security.

Report and pay security 

Tobacco wholesalers must pay security and report it to the province every month.


You must pay security to the province on all tobacco you bring or send into B.C. or receive delivery of in B.C. for resale. The security is an amount equal to the tobacco tax that will be collected when the tobacco is sold to a consumer.  

You must collect security on tobacco you sell to retailers. You may retain this security as a reimbursement for the security you paid to the province on that tobacco. 

You are not required to collect security on tobacco you sell to other valid B.C. wholesale dealers. You can claim a credit on the Collector’s Return for any security you previously paid on the tobacco you sell to another wholesaler.

If you sell wholesale tobacco from within B.C. to out-of-province locations, you can claim a credit on the Collector’s Return for any security previously paid. There may be certain export situations that qualify for a pre-authorized exemption of security. Contact us for more information.

Collector's Return

You will report your security using a Collector’s Return (FIN 125) (PDF). You must pay your security to the Minister of Finance and submit your Collector’s Return by the due date to avoid a late filing penalty and interest.

If you do not file your return and pay security as required, you may be assessed a penalty equal to the amount of security that should have been paid, plus interest. Your wholesale dealer permit may also be suspended, which will prohibit you from selling tobacco in B.C.

Due date

Your payment and Collector’s Return must be received or postmarked on or before the 20th day of the month following the month in which you bring or send the tobacco into B.C., or receive delivery of the tobacco in B.C. For example, if tobacco was received in October, the return and payment in relation to that tobacco are due November 20.

If the due date falls on a weekend or a B.C. statutory holiday, the due date is the next business day.