Described by the tobacco industry as detrimental to the South African economy, the new Bill seeks to ban outdoor smoking in public areas.
In what is likely to lead to a legal showdown with the multi-billion-rand tobacco industry, government and organs of civil society have launched a fierce opposition to smoking.
This endorses the acceleration of the parliamentary passage of the proposed Control of Tobacco Products and Electronic Delivery Systems Bill into law.
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Described by the tobacco industry as detrimental to the South African economy, the Bill seeks to:
Addressing the “World No Tobacco Day” webinar yesterday, under the #committoquit theme, Deputy Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla claimed that tobacco brought a huge burden to the South African economy.
“One gets puzzled when hearing many people talking about the risk to the economy in reference to reduced profits attributed to a ban during levels 4 and 5 lockdowns.
“This is naïve and negates the reality that the economic impact of smoking outweighs so-called losses by tobacco companies.
“The argument about access to illicit cigarettes is not what we want to promote – an area which needs the law enforcement to intervene.
“Smoking is responsible for R14 billion costs of expenditure in our health services – just over 4% of the total budget,” said Phaahla.