The Framework Convention Alliance for Tobacco Control

Tobacco companies exploit Bangladesh TC law

Tobacco control activists call for all tobacco products to be included in Bangladesh’s tobacco control law (c) Aminul Islam Ripon, WBB Trust Article 5.3: industry interference

Big tobacco companies are exploiting loopholes in Bangladesh’s tobacco control law by promoting tobacco products that are not cigarettes.

Bangladesh tobacco control law defines tobacco products as cigarettes only, which allows the tobacco industry to promote other products containing tobacco that are just as hazardous to people’s health. These include zarda, sada-pata, gool, cigars and the mixer used in pipes.

During a recent National Press Club meeting, tobacco control activists from a range of tobacco control non-profit organisations called for these “other” products to be included in the country’s tobacco control law.

The activists also demanded a range of other tobacco control measures be included in the law, such as:
•    Non-motorised vehicles, workplaces, private institutions, restaurants and salons also be included as smoke-free areas.
•    Legal action against tobacco farming to save agricultural land and the environment.
•    Stronger tobacco marketing rules through preventing tobacco companies from advertising through their name, logo and brand colours and from offering presents to customers and promoting smoking through scenes in movies.
•    Pictorial health warnings that cover 50% of tobacco packaging.
•    Increased penalties for smokers in smoke-free places
•    A policy for tobacco taxation.

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