Last updated: July 27, 2020
Advertising and Promotion
Ministry of Information; Ministry of Commerce and Industry
Decree No. 42/2016 amends the Regulation of the Press and Publication Law to prohibit advertising. The Regulation of the Press and Publication does not contain penalty provisions. While the Press and Publication Law itself contains penalty provisions, it is unclear which penalties apply to the violations of the Regulation. That said, it may be that the penalties in Art. 36 of the Press and Publication Law apply, as these penalties apply to the publication of prohibited items. If this is the case, advertising and promotion violations are subject to imprisonment of a maximum of two years and a fine of up to 2000 Omani Riyal, or both.
Violations of the ban on offering tobacco products at a discount are punishable by a fine of 500 Omani Riyal. The fine is doubled upon a repeat violation.
To align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, the law should clearly provide for penalties for violations of the tobacco advertising and promotion ban. In addition to fines and imprisonment, the drafters of the law should consider a penalty of license suspension or revocation, and increased penalties for repeat violations.
Violators of the provision prohibiting sponsorship of contests, games, or events are subject to a fine of 100 Omani Riyals for the first and second offenses, and of 300 Omani Riyals for the third offense. Fines are doubled for recurring offenses during the period of license validity.
Violations related to publicity of permitted sponsorship are subject to penalties applied to advertising and promotion violations.
The law partially aligns with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines in that it provides for fines for violations of limited types of sponsorship, and those fines increase for repeat violations. However, to more fully align with FCTC Art. 13 and the FCTC Art. 13 Guidelines, all forms of sponsorship should be prohibited and the drafters of the law should provide for penalties for those violations, including penalties such as license suspension or revocation. Further, the law should specify the authorized enforcement agency.