Last updated: July 29, 2023
Sierra Leone became a Party to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on August 20, 2009.
Smoke Free Places
Smoking is prohibited in indoor workplaces, indoor public places, and public transport. Smoking is prohibited in some outdoor places, including within 10 meters of a window, door, or air intake mechanism of an enclosed public place, work place, waiting area or queue; within 10 meters of a place of service or consumption of foods or drinks; and within 10 meters of a place where there are children and young persons.
Tobacco Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship
There is a comprehensive ban on tobacco advertising and promotion. Tobacco sponsorship of events and activities is prohibited, while tobacco sponsorship of individuals and organizations may be allowed. Although sponsorship by the tobacco industry is not completely prohibited, publicity of the sponsorship is prohibited.
Tobacco Packaging and Labeling
Every tobacco product package must carry a combined picture/text warning covering not less than 90 percent of each principal display area (front and back). The law does not specify rotation requirements. Misleading packaging and labeling, which could include terms such as “light” and “low tar” and other signs, is prohibited.
Cigarette Contents and Disclosures
The law prohibits tobacco products that have a characterizing flavor or additives that facilitate nicotine uptake. The law does not require that manufacturers and importers disclose to government authorities’ information on the contents or emissions of their products.
The law prohibits the sale of single cigarettes, the sale of cigarettes in packs of less than 20, and the sale of tobacco products via vending machine and the internet. However, there are no restrictions on the sale of tobacco products based on location. The sale of tobacco products is prohibited to persons under the age of 18.
The sale of e-cigarettes is allowed subject to restrictions, including a minimum sales age; a prohibition on any sales which are not direct and face-to-face (vending, internet, and mail sales); and a prohibition on sales of loose e-cigarette liquid cartridges. Rules regarding the use of e-cigarettes in public places; packaging and labeling; advertising, promotion and sponsorship; and restrictions on additives are the same as for tobacco products.
Roadmap to Tobacco Control Legislation
The Tobacco and Nicotine Control Act, 2022 is the primary piece of tobacco control legislation, governing smoke free places; packaging and labeling; advertising, promotion and sponsorship; contents and disclosure; sales restrictions; and e-cigarettes. The law authorizes the issuance of implementing regulations; however, such regulations have not yet been adopted.
This country’s legal measures were reviewed by our legal staff. No in-country lawyers or tobacco control experts reviewed our analysis.