80% pictorial health warnings on cigarette packets: Enforced from June
New anti-tobacco legislation, making it mandatory to carry pictorial warnings covering 80 per cent of cigarette packets, was unanimously approved by the Parliament.
Under the provisions of the Bill, manufacturers or importers of tobacco products are required to carry the Health warnings that are, “displayed conspicuously and in legible print on the top surface area of both the front and back of every packet, package or carton containing the tobacco product manufactured or imported by such manufacturer or importer.” The Health warnings will have to cover an area of 80 per cent of the top surface area of both the front and back of every packet, package or carton containing cigarettes and other tobacco products.
Therefore, the inclusion of 80 percent of pictorial health warnings on cigarette packets will come in to force from June. The Dangerous Drug Control Board has been authorized to select the drawings to be included on the cigarette packet cover. Chairman of the Board Dr.Nilantha Samarasinghe says that drawings which portray serious diseases such as oral cancer will be included.
Increasing to 80% illustrated warnings on cigarettes packets is one of the promises made in the 100-Day programme undertaken by President Maithripala Sirisena.