LANGUAGE
Last updated: June 14th 2020

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising on radio. Legislative Decree No. 177 of July 31, 2005 specifically bans tobacco advertising through audiovisual communications, which includes 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.

Domestic newspapers and magazines

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

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising in the press and other print publications, except for publications intended exclusively for those in the tobacco trade.

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

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising through the press and “other print publications,” which is interpreted as including 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 such as pamphlets, leaflets, flyers, posters and signs.

International 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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising on radio. Legislative Decree No. 177 of 2005 specifically bans tobacco advertising through audiovisual communications, which includes TV and radio. Decree No. 177 applies to all audiovisual providers under Italian jurisdiction, which includes those headquartered or with an office in Italy, or use a satellite up-link in Italy. Therefore, tobacco advertising on international TV and radio originated from or broadcast into Italy is banned.

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

International newspapers and magazines

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising in the press and other print publications, except for publications intended exclusively for those in the tobacco trade. The law also provides an exception for publications published in countries outside the European Union, which are not primarily intended for the EU market. Due to this latter exception, the regulatory status “Some Restrictions” is given.

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

Internet communications

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

Internet communications (not sales)

Analysis:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising in information services, including internet communications.

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

Internet tobacco product sales

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.
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Analysis:

Decree No. 6/2016 bans the transnational sale of tobacco products to consumers in Italy. Therefore, internet sales (or sales by mail) based outside of Italy are prohibited. However, the law does not explicitly prohibit internet sales originating in Italy to consumers outside of Italy are prohibited. Therefore, the regulatory status “Some Restrictions” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit all internet sales of tobacco products.

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

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

Law No. 165 of April 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising through the press and “other print publications,” which is interpreted as including outdoor advertising such as billboards and posters.

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

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising through the press and “other print publications,” which is interpreted as including print material used at point of sale.

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

Point of sale product display

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

The law does not address point of sale product display. Therefore, the law is interpreted as permitting point of sale product display.

The FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines state: “Display and visibility of tobacco products at points of sale constitutes advertising and promotion and should therefore be banned.” To align with FCTC Art. 13 and FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines paras. 12-14, the law should prohibit any display and visibility of tobacco products at points of sale.

Vending machines

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:

The law allows vending machines but restricts their use. Vending machines must be shut down between the hours of 7:00am and 9:00pm, unless the vending machine has an electronic ID reader. Vending machines with electronic ID readers may operate at all hours.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 16 in that it attempts to ensure that tobacco vending machines are not accessible to minors. However, the law does not align with FCTC Art. 13 and FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines para. 14, as vending machines by their very presence constitute a form of advertising. To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit the use of tobacco vending machines.

Conventional mail

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

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising through the press and “other print publications,” which is interpreted as including print material that could be sent 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.

Telephone and cellular phone

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

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. The definition of “advertising” in Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 is: “any form of commercial communication with the purpose or effect, directly or indirectly, to promote a tobacco product.” This definition covers telephone and cellular (mobile) phone tobacco advertising. Therefore, telephone and cellular phone advertising are prohibited.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising by telephone and cellular phone.

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Ministerial Decree No. 425 provides that tobacco advertising is banned “even if carried out indirectly by the use of names, trademarks, emblems or other distinctive features of tobacco products or companies.” Therefore, brand marking is prohibited.

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

Free distribution of tobacco products

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. 300 of December 16, 2004 prohibits free distribution of tobacco products in association with sponsored events, but does not otherwise prohibit free distribution.

To align with FCTC Art. 13, the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, and FCTC Art. 16, the law should completely prohibit the free distribution of tobacco products.

Promotions with a tobacco product purchase

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

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 does not address promotions with a tobacco product purchase. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing such promotions.

Although the law bans tobacco “advertising,” “advertising” is defined as a “commercial communication” and promotions with a tobacco product purchase are not necessarily a form of “communication.” By contrast, the FCTC definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” includes “commercial communication, recommendation, or action,” which would cover promotions with a tobacco product purchase.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly ban tobacco promotion, including promotions with a tobacco product purchase. To clarify the scope of the ban, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” in accordance with the definition contained in the FCTC.

Competitions associated with tobacco products

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.

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

Analysis:

The law does not specifically address competitions associate with tobacco products. However, Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Further, Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 specifically bans tobacco advertising on radio in the press and other print media, and through the internet, and Decree No. 177 of July 31, 2005 prohibits tobacco advertising on TV and radio. Therefore, although competitions associated with tobacco products are not specifically banned, advertising of a competition associated with a tobacco product is banned. In addition, competitions associated with a tobacco product could be considered a form of sponsorship. Sponsorship of events that take place across two countries or those that have cross-border effects is prohibited, and therefore a competition associated with a tobacco product that has cross-border effects is banned. For the above reasons, the regulatory status “Some Restrictions” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly prohibit all tobacco promotion and sponsorship, including competitions associated with a tobacco product. To clarify the scope of the ban, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” in accordance with the definition contained in the FCTC.

Direct person to person targeting of individuals

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

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. The definition of advertising in Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004 is: “any form of commercial communication with the purpose or effect, directly or indirectly, to promote a tobacco product.” This definition covers direct person to person targeting of individuals. Therefore, telephone and cellular phone advertising are prohibited.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to tobacco advertising by telephone and cellular phone.

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Ministerial Decree No. 425 provides that tobacco advertising is banned “even if carried out indirectly by the use of names, trademarks, emblems or other distinctive features of tobacco products or companies.” Therefore, brand stretching is prohibited.

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. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing reverse brand stretching.

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

Toys that resemble tobacco products

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

The law does not address the manufacture or sale of toys that resemble tobacco products. Therefore, the law is interpreted as allowing the manufacture and sale of toys that resemble tobacco products.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit the manufacture and sale of toys that resemble tobacco products.

Candy that resembles tobacco products

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

The law does not address the manufacture or sale of candy that resembles tobacco products. Therefore the law is interpreted as allowing the manufacture and sale of candy that resembles tobacco products.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit the manufacture and sale of candy that resembles tobacco products.

Retailer incentive programs

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

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. The definition of advertising in Legislative Decree No. 300 of 2004 is: “any form of commercial communication with the purpose or effect, directly or indirectly, to promote a tobacco product.” It is unclear whether this definition covers promotional activity such as retailer incentive programs, and the law does not contain a definition of “tobacco promotion.” Therefore the regulatory status “Uncertain” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly prohibit all tobacco advertising and promotion, including promotional activity such as retailer incentive programs. To clarify the scope of the ban on tobacco advertising and promotion, and aid in enforcement, the law should contain a definition of “tobacco advertising and promotion” in accordance with the definition contained in the FCTC.

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

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

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Decree No. 177 of July 31, 2005, Art. 40-bis, specifically prohibits the paid place of tobacco products in audiovisual media.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to paid placement of tobacco products in TV, film, or other media.

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, unpaid depiction is allowed.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the 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

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.

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:

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004, Art. 3.2, specifically prohibits sponsorship of radio programs, and Legislative Decree No. 177 of July 31, 2005, Art. 39, specifically prohibits sponsorship of TV and other audiovisual programs. Article 4 of Legislative Decree No. 300 restricts tobacco sponsorship of events and activities. Specifically, tobacco sponsorship of an event is prohibited if it “is carried out simultaneously in more than one State belonging to the European Community or whose organizer consists of several residents belonging to more than one EU country,” or if the event “produces direct cross-border effects.” However, the law does not prohibit tobacco sponsorship of an event carried out and wholly organized in Italy without cross-border effects. Such events include “corporate social responsibility” programs and youth tobacco prevention programs. Therefore, the regulatory status “Some Restrictions” is given.

To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should prohibit all tobacco sponsorship.

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

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

Law No. 165 of April 10, 1962 and its implementing Ministerial Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991 ban tobacco advertising generally. Legislative Decree No. 425 of November 30, 1991, Art. 3.2, specifically prohibits sponsorship of radio programs, and Legislative Decree No. 177 of July 31, 2005, Art. 39, specifically prohibits sponsorship of TV and other audiovisual programs. Legislative Decree No. 300 of December 16, 2004, Art. 4, restricts tobacco sponsorship of events and activities. Specifically, tobacco sponsorship of an event is prohibited if it “is carried out simultaneously in more than one State belonging to the European Community or whose organizer consists of several residents belonging to more than one EU country,” or if the event “produces direct cross-border effects.” However, the law does not prohibit tobacco sponsorship of an event carried out and wholly organized in Italy without cross-border effects. Publicity of such an event, however, would be prohibited under the general advertising ban. Therefore, the regulatory status “Banned” is given.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to publicity of financial or other sponsorship or support by the tobacco industry.

Promotion by any means that are false, misleading or deceptive

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

The law provides for a general ban on tobacco advertising. Further, Decree No. 6 of January 12, 2016 prohibits the use on tobacco product packaging of information “providing an incorrect impression about the features, health effects, risks or emissions” of the product or “that a particular tobacco product is less harmful than others,” including “texts, symbols, names, trademarks, figurative signs or other.” Taken together, these provisions prohibit promotion by any means that are false, misleading, deceptive, or likely to create an erroneous impression about its characteristics, health effects, hazards, or emissions.

The law aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines with respect to promotion by any means that are false, misleading, deceptive, or likely to create an erroneous impression about its characteristics, health effects, hazards, or emissions.