LANGUAGE
Last updated: December 20th 2019

Other Packaging and Labeling Requirements

Warning requirements on unit packaging and labeling (e.g., packs)

Yes
Analysis

The law requires that all tobacco products are packaged in “proper packaging,” without specifying further details. The Ministry of Finance is obligated to ensure that “the risks of smoking appear on the packaging in an international language,” and individuals who import products without the necessary “risk warnings” are subject to penalties. These provisions are interpreted as requiring on all unit packaging.

The law meets FCTC Art. 11 with respect to warning labels on unit packaging.

Law Source, Section
Articles 6, 20(1), 22(1)

Warning/messages required on outside packaging and labeling (e.g., cartons)

Yes
Analysis

The law requires that all tobacco products are packaged in “proper packaging,” without specifying further details. “Packaging” is defined to include cartons. The Ministry of Finance is obligated to ensure that “the risks of smoking appear on the packaging in an international language,” and individuals who import products without the necessary “risk warnings” are subject to penalties. These provisions are interpreted as requiring on all outside packaging and labeling.

The law meets FCTC Art. 11 with respect to warning labels on outside packaging.

Law Source, Section
Articles 3(2), 6, 20(1), 22(1)

Warning texts must be in the principal language(s) of the country

No
Analysis

The law obligates the Ministry of Finance to ensure that warnings on tobacco products appear “in an international language.” (Previously, the law required that warnings appear “in official languages of the country,” and the prescribed warnings were in written in both English and Pashto.) Because the law was amended to require an “international language” instead of the “official languages of the country,” the regulatory status code “No” is given.

To meet FCTC Art. 11, the law should specify that the warnings must appear in the principal language(s) of the country.

A requirement that warnings or messages may not be placed where they may be permanently damaged or concealed when opening the pack

No
Analysis

The law does not require that warnings or messages not be placed where they may be permanently damaged or concealed when opening the pack.

To align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the law affirmatively should include this requirement.

A requirement that tax stamps or other required markings may not be placed where they may conceal warnings or messages

No
Analysis

The law does not require that tax stamps or other required markings may not be placed where they may conceal warnings or other messages.

To align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the law affirmatively should include this requirement.

A requirement to display qualitative (descriptive) constituents and emissions messages

No
Analysis

The law does not require the display of qualitative (descriptive) constituents and emissions messages.

To align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the law affirmatively should include this requirement.

Prohibition on the display of figures for emission yields (including tar, nicotine, and carbon monoxide)

No
Analysis

The law does not prohibit the display of figures for emission yields on the tobacco product packaging.

To align with FCTC Art. 11 and the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, the law should prohibit the display of emission yield figures because such figures can be misleading to consumers.

Plain or standardized packaging

No
Analysis

Plain packaging of tobacco products is not required.

The FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines provide that Parties should consider adopting plain packaging measures that restrict or prohibit the use of logos, colors, brand images, or other promotional information on packaging other than brand and product names displayed in a standard color and font style. Plain packaging aims to reduce the appeal of tobacco products, to increase the noticeability of health warnings, and to reduce the ability of the packaging of tobacco products to mislead consumers about the harmful effects of smoking.

Prohibition on misleading tobacco product packaging and labeling including terms, descriptors, trademarks, or figurative or other signs (e.g., logos, colors, brand images that directly create a false impression that a tobacco product is less harmful than other tobacco products)

No
Analysis

The law does not prohibit misleading tobacco product packaging and labeling.

To meet FCTC Art. 11, the law should clearly prohibit all misleading tobacco product packaging and labeling including terms, descriptors, trademarks, or figurative or other signs (e.g., logos, colors, brand images) that directly or indirectly create a false impression that a tobacco product is less harmful than other tobacco products.