Tobacco Control Law Modified in Bangladesh

Asian Smoker

Ten years ago, in 2005, Bangladesh adopted Tobacco Control Law which came into action in 2006. With raising awarness about negative effects of smoking and promoting of smoke-free lifesyle by different organizations, the country decided in 2013 to make some modifications in the existing Tobacco Control Law. Now it regulates tobacco use much stricter and more clearly establishes rules for controlling tobacco use.

The issue of tobacco control includes everything from production to marketing. Now it is important to concentrate on different aspects of enforcement of the new legislation which imposes more restrictions on tobacco use in public spaces. The law bans smoking in many public places in order to create more smoke-free environments.

M Mostafa Zaman, the representative of the WHO in Bangladesh, says that tobacco use is considered nowadays an epidemic. The big breakthrough is that people are aware enough about negative effects of smoking. Therefore, now it is important to focus on effective enforcement of the law.

The law imposes that all medical institutions should become smoke-free. Those institutions already received a directive about it from Health Ministry. Experts say that major role in fighting tobacco use would play doctors and they should be informed in details about secondhand smoke effects and they should spread the word about the ban.

Bangladesh is the country where cigarettes are cheap. Though cigarette tax is high enough, but the final proce still remains low. Therefore there is a need to raise the tax one more time, because it will help to prevent young people from buying cigarettes.

Another problem is that license is needed for selling alcohol but not for selling cigarettes. Therefore, experts consider that there is a need to make posession of license obligatory for cigarettes too.

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