New Zealand announced that it will ban retailers from selling cigarettes to Kiwis born from 2011 onward as part of its plan to outlaw smoking by 2025.
It will be illegal to sell nicotine products to people aged 14 or below in New Zealand when the law comes into effect in 2025 and authorities will be reducing overall nicotine content for older people.
“Smoking is still the leading cause of preventable death in New Zealand and causes one in four cancers,” associate health minister Ayesha Verrall.
“We want to make sure young people never start smoking … if nothing changes it would be decades till Maori smoking rates fall below five percent, and this government is not prepared to leave people behind,” Verrall added.
The country’s smoking population is only 13 percent of 5 million New Zealanders, but the portion is bigger for Maori New Zealanders at 31 percent. The Smokefree 2025 aims to limit the smoking population to 5 percent.
The government aims to have the law signed by the end of 2022 as a prelude to its Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan. That would make New Zealand’s tobacco industry the second most restricted in the world, next to Bhutan where cigarettes are outright banned.
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