The International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease (IUATLD) has commended the Uruguayan government for introducing a bill to require all cigarettes to be sold in standardized packaging, according to a IUATLD statement relayed by the TMA.
The standardized packs will be devoid of logos, colors, brand images and promotional information, while the brand and product names will be displayed in a standard color and font.
Current regulations require that graphic health warnings cover 80 percent of the front and back surfaces of cigarette packs.
The statement said that, if the bill is approved, Uruguay would become the seventh nation to require standardized cigarette packaging after Australia, France, Ireland, New Zealand, Norway and the UK. José Luis Castro, executive director of the IUATLD, said Uruguay had become a world leader in tobacco control.
He said the new policy would take the country a step closer to neutralizing the power of tobacco brands and prioritising the health of citizens above the interests of the tobacco industry.
The IUATLD believes that standardized packaging is a powerful public health measure proven to help smokers quit and discourage non-smokers from beginning the habit.
Castro said the bill sought to reduce the product’s appeal by removing tobacco advertisements and promotions, and thereby eliminating the possibility that consumers might be misled into believing that one product was less harmful than another.
It sought also to increase the visibility and effectiveness of graphic health warnings.