British American Tobacco has warned that sales and profits would be lower than expected.

According to Evening Standard, this development has occurred due to stricter-than-expected lockdowns in South Africa, Mexico and Argentina.

Putting sales into consideration, the London-based tobacco giant, which sells Pall Mall, Rothmans and other higher-end brands overseas, pointed to South Africa in particular, where sales of tobacco were stopped altogether in March as part of strict measures to stop the virus from spreading through the country where 37% of men smoke.

Alongside the previously announced hit from the lack of people buying boxes of cigarettes as they pass through airport, revenues for this year will now be only 1-3% up on a year ago instead of the lower end of 3-5% as previously forecast by the company.

Shares fell 3% as investors responded to the gloomier picture for the group, which has now pushed back its target for revenues of £5 billion by a year to 2025.

Profits would also come in at “mid-single digit” percentage growth instead of “high single figure” indicated before.