16 August 2022
The Control of Tobacco Product and Smoking Bill 2022 (“Bill”) was tabled for its first reading on 27th July 2022 by the Minister of Health.
Colloquially dubbed as the “Generational End Game Bill” or “GEG”, the Bill is aimed at eradicating the habit of smoking with the view of protecting the health of Malaysians and at making Malaysia a tobacco free country by 2040.
The most ambitious of the measures proposed is the introduction of a prohibition against smoking, purchasing and / or possession of tobacco or tobacco products and devices by all individuals born on 1st January 2007 onwards.
If convicted of an offence, such individuals may be liable to fines of up to RM 5,000.00 while those who sell tobacco products and devices to such individuals may be liable to a fine of up to RM 300,000.00, imprisonment of up to 3 years or both (the maximum where a seller is a body corporate convicted for the second or each subsequent offence).
Sale of imitation tobacco products, which would include e-cigarettes, vapes and heated tobacco products, is also proposed to be banned under this Bill.
Other provisions in the Bill include:-
a) The import, manufacture or distribution of any tobacco products may only be done by registered persons [Section 3]
b) All advertising, promotion or sponsorship of tobacco products or imitation tobacco products shall be prohibited [Sections 7 to 9]
c) The sale or display for sale of tobacco products shall only be permissible within requirements to be prescribed [Section 10]
d) The sale of imitation of tobacco products shall be prohibited [Section 11]
e) Tobacco products shall not be given as a gift or prize [Section 12]
f) Controls on the price, packaging, labelling and manufacturing of tobacco products [Section 14 and 15]
g) Enforcement and prosecution powers [Parts IX and X]
A bold move which may not be well received by certain industry groups, the Bill is nevertheless a welcomed step in the right direction to better the health of Malaysians.
Managing Partner and Head, IP
* This Alert is intended for general information of the clients of our Firm. It should not be regarded as legal professional advice. If you need advice based on specific facts, please feel free to contact us.