The Framework Convention Alliance for Tobacco Control

Nepal tobacco package warnings lead Asia

A volunteer from Nepal's Resource Centre for Primary Health Care (RECPHEC) attempts to educate a smoker in Lalitpur city about the country's new tobacco control law. © RECPHEC

Nepal now has some of the largest graphic warnings on tobacco packages in the world, including on smokeless tobacco packages.

The government of the South Asian country passed its tobacco control legislation in May 2011. It includes a ban on smoking in public places and graphic warnings covering 75 per cent of each side of cigarette packages and the packages of other tobacco products.

The other products include gutkha ( a sweetened mixture of chewing tobacco, betel nut and palm nut), khaini (chewing tobacco) and surti (tobacco leaves). 

On 4 November, the government’s cabinet directed that the legislation be implemented immediately. On Wednesday, the Nepal Supreme Court issued an interim order also ordering immediate implementation.

In addition, the court order gave authorities the power to seize tobacco products that do not include graphic warnings.

Uruguay currently has the largest cigarette package health warnings in the world, at 80 per cent of the package front and back. However, Australia has announced proposed warnings that would cover 75 per cent of the front, and 90 per cent of the back of the package. 

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