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Smoking laws: Five huge changes proposed for South Africa

By Tom Head - 2018-05-07

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The proposed Control of Tobacco and Electronic Delivery Systems Bill has been opened up for public debate. Dramatic changes to South African smoking laws could soon become a reality, should the bill receive Parliamentary approval.

The changes are said to be in the interests of all South Africans and their health. However, smokers – and the tobacco industry itself – feel that the war against cigarettes has gone a step too far.

There are some bold ideas on the horizon, which could permanently impact the way smoking is perceived in this country. Here are the proposals that smokers may soon be getting to grips with.

Potential changes to South African smoking laws:
Smokers must be at least 10 metres away from any public buildings
In the near future, standing outside your office block with a cigarette in hand and back against the wall could become an illegal practice. It’s proposed that smokers must be a sizeable distance away from all public buildings. Terrible news if you’re based in a busy city centre.

Displays of all tobacco products will be removed
Not only would stores be asked to stop displaying packs of cigarettes in view of customers, but the packaging itself would be totally plain on all name brands.

A total ban on public indoor smoking
You may have a favourite spot where you can drink, smoke and eat all in the same place. That could soon become a thing of the past, though. All designated indoor smoking areas would be banned under the Control of Tobacco and Electronic Delivery Systems Bill.

An end to cigarette vending machines
This would certainly be a thorn in the side of many smokers. The bill states that all vending machines which exclusively sell tobacco products will be completely banned, limiting those who consider picking cigarettes up on a whim.

More detailed E-cigarette regulations
This is the first time e-cigarettes are facing strict legislation. As reported by the Huffington Post, “vaping” is still considered dangerous because nicotine remains toxic. Comprehensive laws regarding where someone can and cannot have a draw on an e-cig would come into effect alongside this bill.

Source: the south African