New Zealand is set to become the first country in the world to ban tobacco

New Zealand is set to become the first country in the world to ban tobacco

Health By Feb 27, 2024 No Comments

Officials say the rules will get tougher over time—File: Photo

Wellington: New Zealand’s government has said it is banning tobacco to stop selling it to a new generation, making New Zealand the first country in the world to ban tobacco.

According to a report by the Reuters news agency, the New Zealand government will implement a ban on tobacco sales in July, and the strictest tobacco ban laws will ban sales to children born after January 1, 2009.

The ban will reduce the amount of nicotine in cigarettes and reduce the number of tobacco sellers in the country by 90 or more.

New Zealand’s government, elected in October 2023, has confirmed that the law change will take place on an emergency basis today (Tuesday) and the old law will be scrapped without a public consultation.

Deputy Health Minister Kay Costello said the Coalition Government was committed to reducing smoking, but different legal approaches were being taken to discourage the habit and reduce its harm.

Costello said he would soon seek Cabinet approval for measures that would increase resources to help people quit smoking and tougher laws to keep young people away from tobacco.

The expected decision had previously been criticized in New Zealand for the impact it would have on public health and concerns that the population of the islands and Pacifica, where smoking rates are high, would be worst affected. .

On the other hand, University of Otago researcher Janet Hoek said the legislation was passed despite comprehensive research evidence and opposition to the measures from Maori leadership and would have adverse health effects.

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