British Tobacco Productora de Cigarrillos Sociedad Anonima (Probat S.A.) v. Paraguay

The petitioners filed an appeal for legal protection, challenging the constitutionality of two administrative Decrees that regulated Article 8 and Article 11 of the FCTC. One of the decrees provided warning and labeling requirements for tobacco products, and the other one established that enclosed spaces with access to the public, workplaces, and public transportation were 100% smoke-free places.

The Court held that, even though the FCTC had become legally binding to Paraguay upon its ratification, the provisions implementing the treaty needed to be adopted first by a law enacted by Congress. According to the Court, the FCTC contained only “programmatic” clauses and not “self-enforcing” provisions. The Court stated that the Executive Branch’s decrees established duties, obligations, and restrictions not allowed under the National Constitution, the Law ratifying the FCTC, or the Sanitary Code. Further, one of the decrees established infractions and penalties, violating the principle of criminal legality, and was enacted in ignorance of a previous law that protected non-smokers, which was entirely in force. Therefore, both administrative decrees were declared unconstitutional, as the Executive Branch had issued them in violation of the separation of powers, among other principles.


British Tobacco Productora De Cigarrillos Sociedad Anonima (Probat S.A.) v. Paraguay, Acuerdo y Sentencia 484, Corte Suprema de Justicia de Paraguay [Supreme Court of Paraguay](2010).

  • Paraguay
  • Oct 18, 2010
  • Corte Suprema de Justicia, sala constitucional (Supreme Court of Justice, Constitutional Chamber)


Plaintiff British Tobacco Productora De Cigarrillos Sociedad Anonima (Probat S.A.)

Defendant Executive Branch

Cited Legislation

Decree No. 4106 Decree No. 4174 Law No. 2969

Constitution of Paraguay

Sanitary Code

Related Documents

Type of Litigation

Tobacco Control Topics

Substantive Issues

Type of Tobacco Product