Australia has passed strict smoking laws aimed at curbing youth smoking by requiring new graphic warnings on e-cigarettes. The law prohibits the use of attractive names for e-cigarette products and mandates the addition of graphic warning labels on all cigarette packaging, including e-cigarettes.
Health Minister Mark Butler stated that these changes will save lives and help combat the deceptive marketing tactics of big tobacco companies. Approximately 20% of young people aged 18 to 24 in Australia use e-cigarettes, and around one in seven individuals aged 14 to 17 in this age group use these products.
The new laws will also ban the import of disposable e-cigarettes starting early next year, with the exception of prescription for therapeutic use by doctors and nurses. Additionally, from March next year, it will be illegal to import or supply e-cigarettes that do not meet the standards set by medical regulatory agencies.
Terry Slevin, CEO of the Australian Public Health Association, expressed support for the new laws, stating that they will save thousands of lives and re-establish Australia as a global leader in tobacco control.
These laws signify a renewed effort to combat tobacco and protect the next generation from the devastating effects of smoking. With the rising use of e-cigarettes among young people, these measures are seen as crucial steps in reducing the national smoking rate and protecting future generations from the influence of the tobacco industry.