Last updated: September 23, 2021
Belarus became a Party to the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on December 7, 2005.
Smoke Free Places
Smoking is prohibited in educational facilities and on most public transport (except for commercial watercraft). Smoking is restricted to designated areas in most other places, including healthcare facilities, cultural facilities, sports facilities, shops, restaurants, government facilities, and public transport facilities.
Tobacco Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship
The law prohibits most forms of tobacco advertising and promotion. Permitted forms include reverse brand stretching, competitions associated with tobacco products, and unpaid depiction in TV, film, or other media. Product display at points of sale is prohibited except in duty-free shops. Tobacco sponsorship is allowed. However, it is unclear whether certain types of publicity of tobacco sponsorship are prohibited under the law.
Tobacco Packaging and Labeling
On the packaging of smoked tobacco products, rotating picture and text health warnings are required to cover 50 percent of the front and back of the packaging. The law does not require health warnings on smokeless tobacco product packaging. Instead, the law requires that smokeless tobacco products include a leaflet within the package that includes health warnings about tobacco consumption dangers. Misleading packaging and labeling, including terms such as “light” and “low tar” and other signs, is prohibited.
Cigarette Contents and Disclosures
The law regulates specified contents of cigarettes, including banning mint, some herbs, and other flavorings. Manufacturers and importers are required to disclose to government authorities information on the contents and emissions of their products.
The law prohibits the sale of single cigarettes and the sale of tobacco products via the internet and vending machine. In addition, the law prohibits the sale of tobacco products in a number of locations, including schools/educational facilities, sports facilities, healthcare facilities, cultural facilities, and other enumerated places. There are no restrictions on the sale of small packets of cigarettes. The sale of tobacco products is prohibited to persons under the age of 18.
The sale of e-cigarettes is allowed. The law prohibits vending machine sales and the use of e-cigarettes where smoking is prohibited. In addition, the law prohibits internet sales and most forms of advertising of e-liquids. Health warnings are not required on e-cigarette packaging.
Heated Tobacco Products
The sale of heated tobacco products (HTPs) is allowed. Existing smoking restrictions apply to HTPs. The law prohibits most forms of tobacco advertising and promotion, with limited exceptions for tobacco inserts, but does not include any restrictions on the tobacco advertising and promotion of devices. HTP sponsorship is allowed. While health warnings on product packaging are not required, a warning about the dangers of consumption of tobacco products must be included inside the packaging for tobacco inserts.
Roadmap to Tobacco Control Legislation
Presidential Decree No. 28 of December 17, 2002 is the primary law in Belarus regulating the production, distribution, and consumption of e-cigarettes and tobacco products, including HTPs. It regulates smoking and the use of e-cigarettes in public places, sales restrictions, and packaging requirements, among other things. Decree No. 28 has been amended several times. In addition to Decree No. 28, Ministry of Health Ruling No. 111 implements restrictions on smoking in public places. Ministry of Internal Affairs Order No. 174 of 2000 prohibits smoking in non-smoking areas of prisons.
The Law on Advertising regulates advertising generally in Belarus. Article 17 specifically regulates tobacco advertising, including tobacco inserts of HTPs. It has been amended several times, most recently in July 2015.
As part of the Eurasian Economic Union, packaging and labeling of smoked tobacco products must comply with the Technical Regulations for Tobacco Products (TR TC 035/2015) and EEC Council Decision No. 18.
Ministry of Internal Affairs Resolution No. 47 of 2010 authorizes the Ministry of Internal Affairs to enforce all tobacco control legislation. The Code of Administrative Offenses contains penalties for administrative offenses.
This country’s legal measures were reviewed by our legal staff in consultation with in-country lawyers or tobacco control experts.
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