LANGUAGE
Last updated: September 23rd 2021

Regulated Forms of Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship

Domestic TV and radio (including all broadcast media such as satellite and cable)

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising on domestic TV and radio.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising on domestic TV and radio.

Law Source, Section

Domestic newspapers and magazines

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising in domestic newspapers and magazines.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising in domestic newspapers and magazines.

Law Source, Section

Other domestic print media, such as pamphlets, leaflet, flyers, posters, signs (not including print advertising at the point of sale)

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising through domestic print media such as pamphlets, leaflets, flyers, posters, and signs.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising in domestic print media.

Law Source, Section

International TV and radio (including all broadcast media such as satellite and cable)

Uncertain
The status of the regulation is uncertain due to lack of clarity in the law or inability to obtain all relevant laws.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising on domestic TV and radio. However, because the law does not explicitly ban tobacco advertising on international or cross- border TV and radio, the regulatory status code “Uncertain” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should explicitly prohibit tobacco advertising on international TV and radio.

Law Source, Section

International newspapers and magazines

Uncertain
The status of the regulation is uncertain due to lack of clarity in the law or inability to obtain all relevant laws.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising in domestic newspapers and magazines. However, because the law does not explicitly ban tobacco advertising in international newspapers and magazines, the regulatory status code “Uncertain” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should explicitly prohibit tobacco advertising in international newspapers and magazines.

Law Source, Section

Internet communications

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.

Internet communications (not sales)

Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising through internet communications.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising through internet communications.

Law Source, Section

Internet tobacco product sales

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Decree No. 28 of 2002 prohibits the retail sale of tobacco products through the internet.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco product sales via the internet.

Outdoor advertising (e.g., billboards, posters)

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting outdoor tobacco advertising.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to outdoor tobacco advertising.

Law Source, Section

Point of sale advertising/promotion

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.

Point of sale advertising/promotion (other than product displays)

Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting point of sale tobacco advertising and promotion.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to point of sale tobacco advertising and promotion.

Law Source, Section

Point of sale product display

Some Restrictions
There is not a complete ban on the listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship, but one or more limits on the form applies.
Analysis:

Decree No. 28 of 2002 prohibits retail sale of tobacco products by “self-service methods in other ways in which the buyer has direct access to these products.” The law further specifies that the display of products is prohibited in store windows and in/on other retail equipment. However, this does not apply to duty-free shops. As a result of this exception, the regulatory status code “Some Restrictions” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit all point of sale product display without exception.

Vending machines

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Decree No. 28 of 2002 prohibits the retail sale of tobacco products through vending machines.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13, the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, and FCTC Art. 16 regarding the sale of tobacco products through vending machines.

Conventional mail

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising and promotion through conventional mail.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising and promotion through conventional mail.

Law Source, Section

Telephone and cellular phone

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising and promotion by telephone and cellular (mobile) phone.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising and promotion through telephone and cellular (mobile) phone.

Law Source, Section

Brand marking on physical structures

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.

Distinctive words, designs, images, logos, sounds, or colors to promote tobacco products in entertainment venues, retail outlets, on vehicles and equipment, or other physical structures (brand marking on physical structures, other than on tobacco product packaging and labeling and print material)

Analysis:

The Amendment to the Law on Advertising of July 2015 adds the following language to Art. 10 on the Law on Advertising:

“Advertising containing the product name, company name, name of the citizen, trademark or service mark, product image or its consumer packaging, identical or confusingly similar to the name of tobacco products, the trademark used to designate the names of tobacco products or images of tobacco products or their consumer packaging (hereinafter - advertising similar to the advertising of tobacco products) is not permitted, except in cases specified in parts three and four of this paragraph.”

This provision prohibits brand marking on structures and equipment as well as brand stretching on non-tobacco products.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to brand marking.

Free distribution of tobacco products

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco products free of charge.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13, the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, and FCTC Art. 16 with respect to the free distribution of tobacco products.

Law Source, Section

Promotions with a tobacco product purchase

Some Restrictions
There is not a complete ban on the listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship, but one or more limits on the form applies.

Promotional discounts, gifts, prizes, rewards to consumers in conjunction with a tobacco product purchase (e.g., buy one pack, get one free or, key chains, t-shirts, coupons, points)

Analysis:

The Law on Advertising prohibits offering to people under the age of 18 "goods or rights to take part in contests, lotteries, games, other play and advertising activities or betting” in conjunction with a tobacco product purchase. Such contests/competitions can only be carried out in specific areas in places where tobacco products are sold.

In addition, the law prohibits giving tobacco products as prizes during contests, lotteries, games, etc.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit all promotional discounts, gifts, prizes, and rewards to consumers on conjunction with a tobacco product purchase.

Law Source, Section

Competitions associated with tobacco products

Allowed
There is no ban and there are no restrictions whatsoever applicable.

Competitions associated with tobacco products or brand names, whether requiring the purchase of a tobacco product or not

Analysis:

Article 17 of the Law on Advertising governs advertising of alcohol and tobacco products. Article 17.3 prohibits some types of tobacco promotion (such as promotions with tobacco product purchase); however, it does not specifically prohibit competitions associated with tobacco products. In contract, Art. 17 specifically prohibits competitions aimed at promoting the sale of alcoholic beverages. Because this article of the law specifically prohibits competitions associated with alcoholic beverages but does not prohibit competitions associated with tobacco products, the law is interpreted as allowing competitions associated with tobacco products.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit all tobacco advertising and promotion, including competitions associated with tobacco products.

Direct person to person targeting of individuals

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” This is interpreted as prohibiting tobacco advertising by direct person-to-person targeting of individuals.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising and promotion by direct person- to-person targeting of individuals.

Law Source, Section

Brand stretching/trademark diversification

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.

Non-tobacco products or services using tobacco brand names or carrying a brand logo or other brand indicia (brand stretching)

Analysis:

The July 2015 Amendment to the Law on Advertising adds the following language to Art. 10 on the Law on Advertising: 

“Advertising containing the product name, company name, name of the citizen, trademark or service mark, product image or its consumer packaging, identical or confusingly similar to the name of tobacco products, the trademark used to designate the names of tobacco products or images of tobacco products or their consumer packaging (hereinafter - advertising similar to the advertising of tobacco products) is not permitted, except in cases specified in parts three and four of this paragraph.”

This provision prohibits the use of tobacco brand names, logos other brand indicia on non-tobacco products.

In addition, Decree No. 28 prohibits the use of “the names of types of tobacco product in the names” of non-tobacco products.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to brand stretching.

Reverse brand stretching or brand sharing

Allowed
There is no ban and there are no restrictions whatsoever applicable.

Tobacco products or services using non-tobacco brand names (reverse brand stretching or brand sharing)

Analysis:

The law does not address reverse brand stretching or brand sharing. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing reverse brand stretching or brand sharing.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly prohibit reverse brand stretching or brand sharing. In addition, to clarify the scope of the ban and to aid in enforcement, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” in accordance with the definition provided in the FCTC.

Toys that resemble tobacco products

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

The law prohibits non-tobacco products from imitating the appearance of tobacco products. We interpret this provision as prohibiting toys that resemble tobacco products are prohibited.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to toys that resemble tobacco products.

Candy that resembles tobacco products

Banned
The listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship is completely banned.
Analysis:

The law prohibits non-tobacco products from imitating the appearance of tobacco products. We interpret this provision as prohibiting candy that resembles tobacco products is prohibited.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to candy that resembles tobacco products.

Retailer incentive programs

Allowed
There is no ban and there are no restrictions whatsoever applicable.

Retailer incentive programs (e.g., rewards to retailers for achieving certain sales volume, enhanced displays, etc.) or other payments to encourage them to sell tobacco products

Analysis:

The law does not address retailer incentive programs. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing retailer incentive programs.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly prohibit retailer incentive programs. In addition, to clarify the scope of the tobacco advertising and promotion ban and to aid in enforcement, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” in accordance with the definition provided in the FCTC.

Paid placement of tobacco products in TV, film or other media

Uncertain
The status of the regulation is uncertain due to lack of clarity in the law or inability to obtain all relevant laws.
Analysis:

The Law on Advertising does not address paid placement of tobacco products in TV, film, or other media. Article 17.3 of the Law on Advertising prohibits the distribution of tobacco product advertising. The definition of “advertisement” includes “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” Because paid placement may or may not be interpreted as “information,” it is uncertain whether the prohibition on tobacco advertising covers paid placement of tobacco products in TV, film, or other media.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly prohibit paid placement of tobacco products in TV, film, and other media. In addition, to clarify the scope of the advertising ban and to aid in enforcement, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” in accordance with the definition provided in the FCTC.

Law Source, Section

Unpaid depiction of tobacco use or tobacco products in media that does not serve a legitimate purpose

Allowed
There is no ban and there are no restrictions whatsoever applicable.

Unpaid depiction of tobacco use or tobacco products in TV, film or other media that is not legitimate journalistic, artistic, or academic expression or legitimate social or political commentary

Analysis:

The law does not address unpaid depiction of tobacco use or tobacco products in media. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing unpaid depiction of tobacco use and tobacco products.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should specifically address unpaid placement in accordance with FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines paras. 29-32.

Tobacco industry sponsorship of events, activities, individuals, organizations or governments

Allowed
There is no ban and there are no restrictions whatsoever applicable.

Financial or other sponsorship or support by the tobacco industry to events, activities, individuals or groups (e.g., groups involved in sports, the arts, politics, charitable or welfare, or other activities, or youth smoking prevention programs)

Analysis:

The law does not address tobacco industry sponsorship of events, activities, individuals, organizations, or governments. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing tobacco industry sponsorship of events, activities, individuals, organizations, or governments, including contributions to “corporate social responsibility” programs.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit tobacco sponsorship of all kinds. In addition, to clarify the scope of the ban and to aid in enforcement, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco sponsorship” in accordance with the definition provided in the FCTC.

Publicity of financial or other sponsorship or support by the tobacco industry if tobacco sponsorship is not banned

Uncertain
The status of the regulation is uncertain due to lack of clarity in the law or inability to obtain all relevant laws.
Analysis:

The law does not address tobacco sponsorship. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing tobacco sponsorship. While the law does not explicitly address publicity of tobacco industry sponsorship, publicity of sponsorship might be prohibited under the ban on tobacco advertising. For example, the tobacco advertising ban might prohibit signs or posters displaying a tobacco product brand at a sponsored event. However, it is unclear if such an action qualifies as an “advertisement,” which is defined as “information on the subject of advertising distributed in any form by any means.” Further, it is equally unclear if the tobacco advertising ban would prohibit display of a manufacturer’s symbol or logo. Therefore, the regulatory status code “Uncertain” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit tobacco sponsorship of all kinds. In addition, to clarify the scope of the ban and to aid enforcement, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco sponsorship” in accordance with the definition provided in the FCTC.

Promotion by any means that are false, misleading or deceptive

Some Restrictions
There is not a complete ban on the listed form of tobacco advertising, promotion & sponsorship, but one or more limits on the form applies.

Promotion by any means that are false, misleading or deceptive or likely to create an erroneous impression about a product's characteristics, health effects, hazards or emissions (covering any term, descriptor, trademark, emblem, marketing image, logo, color and figurative, or any other indicia)

Analysis:

GOST 3935-2000 (as amended by Amendment No. 4), Art. 4.11.18 prohibits the use on tobacco product packaging of “words or word combinations that can be used to make an impression that a specific tobacco product is less harmful compared to other tobacco products, for example, ‘light’, ‘very light’ or ‘with low content of resin’.” The law also prohibits “signs or other designations” that give the impression that a tobacco product is less harmful than another. However, the law provides for an exception for “the names of brands representing trademarks made from several words that are registered or submitted for registration in the Republic of Belarus before 1 July 2008.” Due to this exemption, the regulatory status code “Some Restrictions” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should explicitly prohibit promotion by any means that are false, misleading, deceptive, or likely to create an erroneous impression about the characteristics, health effects, hazards, or emissions of a tobacco product, including any term, descriptor, trademark, emblem, marketing image, logo, color and figurative, or any other indicia.