Last updated: January 14, 2021
Health Warnings/Messages Features
As of July 1, 2020, plain packaging is required for all tobacco products available for retail sale.
The law requires that the tobacco product's health warnings occupy 75% of the total area of the external surface of the retail package. The health warnings must be parallel to and as close to the top edge of the container as possible. The warnings must be rotated so that each warning appears on an equal number of containers of each kind of tobacco product over a 24-month period. The law does not specify a time frame within which the health warnings must be updated. The text of each warning must be printed in white against a black background, other than the word “WARNING” which must appear in red.
Tobacco products must contain the following health information message: “Smoking exposes you and those around you to more than 4,000 toxic chemicals, of which at least 60 can cause cancer. The chemicals include tar, nicotine, carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, ammonia and benzene.” For cigarettes, the health information message must occupy 50% of the side of the pack. The location varies for other types of tobacco products.
Every retail package of any tobacco product must bear the following words: “NO SALE TO UNDER-AGED PERSONS.”
For smoked tobacco products packaging, the law meets FCTC Art. 11 but does not align with some important aspects of the FCTC Art. 11 Guidelines, particularly with regard to updating the message content. The law should specify that the Minister should update the messages every 12 to 36 months.
It is prohibited to import, distribute, sell, or offer for sale the following forms of smokeless tobacco: chewing tobacco, oral snuff, nasal snuff, and dissolvable tobacco or nicotine.