Set a date to ban cigarette sales in Australia, urge public health researchers

WION Web Team
Sydney Published: Nov 15, 2021, 07:30 PM(IST)

A placard against smoking (representative image). Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Leading public health researchers have said that the governments must set a date for banning the sale of cigarettes through retailers. They said that it is time to find new ways to boost revenue without relying on tobacco excise taxes. A research published in the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) showed that 52.8% people surveyed in a poll agreed with phasing out the sale of cigarettes in retail outlets

The battle for putting an end to the sale of cigarettes in Australia has been ensuing for a long time.  

In the latest development, leading public health researchers have said that the governments must set a date for banning the sale of cigarettes through retailers, including supermarkets.  

They also said that it is time to find new ways of boosting revenue without relying on tobacco excise taxes. 

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This development comes as a research published in the Medical Journal of Australia (MJA) showed on Monday that 1,466 respondents (52.8%) to a Victorian Cancer Council survey had agreed with phasing out the sale of cigarettes in retail outlets. 

Associate prof Coral Gartner, an international expert in tobacco control policy with the University of Queensland, said, “Sometimes, the public is ahead of the policy.” 

In a different MJA piece also published on Monday, Gartner and her colleagues wrote that it is time for governments to move beyond measures that focus on consumers, such as plain-packaging laws and tobacco-harm warnings and start focusing on supply. 

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The piece said that there is an urgent need for “ending the regulatory exceptionalism that has maintained the legal status of tobacco products as a consumer good.” 

“Cigarettes do not meet modern consumer product safety standards,” Gartner and her colleagues said.  

(With inputs from agencies)

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