Singapore’s Ministry of Health (MOH) has launched a public consultation on the proposal to implement standardised packaging of tobacco products with a larger graphic health warning.
As part of the public consultation process, the government will accept public views and opinions for six weeks, beginning from 5 February to 16 March this year.
According to the government release, the use of tobacco products continues to be a significant public health concern, and efforts to reduce its usage is critical to secure good health for Singaporeans.
A number of the key elements that have been included by the governmental standardised packaging proposal include the regulation of the promotional aspects on tobacco packaging, standardising tobacco packaging elements and further increasing the size of the graphic health warnings from 50% to 75%.
With its new proposal, the Singapore Government anticipates that tobacco product packaging will become less attractive and eliminates the scope for the manufacturers to use it as a form of advertising and promotion.
The government also expects that if approved, the new packaging format would better inform smokers and non-smokers of the risks associated with tobacco use.
If the standardised packaging proposal is implemented by the government, then it would be part of Singapore’s tobacco control strategy to promote public health and constitute a significant step towards Singapore becoming a tobacco-free society.
The government’s final decision on the proposal will take into consideration the public feedback and responses.
Australia was the first country to implement standardised tobacco product packaging in 2012, followed by the UK.