Digest No. 1831
Need for the Bill
In relation to the restriction on display, the prohibition comes “into force six months after it becomes law, but people offering tobacco products for sale may be exempted from compliance during a 2-year transition period.
“Although the Act currently restricts retail displays to some extent, it allows tobacco companies to display their products prominently in some 10 000 dairies, supermarkets, and petrol stations. This everyday presence of tobacco products:
sanctions or normalises their availability and use; and
increases the risks of young people and others experimenting with smoking; and
can trigger relapses in addicted smokers trying to quit.
Retail displays of tobacco are also a particular focus of public concern and calls for prohibition”
The Bill prohibits the display on the exterior of retail premises of retailers' names or trading names that are or include words, phrases, trade marks, or company names that have the effect of advertising the availability of tobacco. Limited information may be displayed by retailers and on automatic vending machines. The Bill also generally prohibits the display of tobacco products in or from sales outlets or vending machines. (Part 1, Clause 6, amending Section 22; Clause 7, substituting Sections 23 and 23A of the Act).
Arrangements conflicting with the Act have no effect
The Bill provides that a term of an arrangement (for example, of a contract, or a legally binding or other agreement, undertaking, or understanding) has no effect if compliance with the term would “”prevent or “limit” compliance with the prohibition. Persons adversely affected even though they are not in a contractual relationship are given rights to obtain relief under the Illegal Contracts Act 1970 (Part 1, Clause 8, inserting New Section 28A into the Act).
The Bill creates an offence where a person without reasonable excuse allows a tobacco product, tobacco package, or tobacco carton to be visible in contravention of New Section 23A (display of tobacco products (see above)). A person who commits such an offence is liable to a fine not exceeding $10,000 (Part 2, Clause 12).
The Bill provides for an infringement notice scheme to enforce the prohibition on the sale of tobacco products to people below the age of 18 years (Part 2, Clause 13, inserting New Sections 38A-38D).
The Bill provides that regulations may be made for various purposes detailed in the Bill. In particular, regulations may relate to warnings which must be placed on, or in respect of, tobacco products (Part 2, Clause 14, , amending Section 39 of the Act, inserting new subsections (6A) and (6B)).
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