Stricter rules approved

Swiss senators have voted to ban the sale of cigarettes to minors and further restrict tobacco advertising, reports Swissinfo.

Under the law, tobacco firms would no longer be able to sponsor international events or activities organized by the government. Companies would also need to declare to the Federal Office of Public Health the amount spent annually on advertising, promotion and sponsorship.

Cantons would be permitted to pursue more restrictive laws. Currently, eleven cantons prohibit the sale of cigarettes to minors while 12 have set the minimum purchase age at 16. Three cantons have no limits.

Previous attempts by Parliament to tighten the tobacco law have come up against a bloc of right-of-center parliamentarians fearful of the economic consequences.

Switzerland hosts some of the world’s biggest global tobacco firms, including Philip Morris International and Japan Tobacco International.

The Senate now passes the baton to the House of Representatives.