Vietnam National Assembly passes Tobacco Control Law

Vietnam National Assembly passes Tobacco Control Law

18 June 2012-Hanoi: Vietnam marked a historic and important milestone in health today, 18 June 2012, as its National Assembly passed the highly anticipated Tobacco Control law of 2012.

Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA) Director Bungon Ritthiphakdee, speaking from Bangkok, said, “We are very happy about this development and congratulate everyone concerned for all the hard work in ensuring the final version of the law is strong and in line with the WHO-Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.”

The Tobacco
Control law of Vietnam has the following key contents intact: 50 percent pictorial health warnings, Tobacco Control fund, including its road map, 1 percent of pre- tax excise price effective 1/5/2013, 1.5 percent in the next 3 years, and 2 percent by the year 2019, Smoke-free
indoors: 100 percent indoor, except for hotels, bars, karaoke and finally, total ban on tobacco advertising and promotions (TAPS).

The past year’s work towards the new law was crucial for health advocates and civil society, and SEATCA acknowledged the Vietnam Committee on Smoking or Health (VINACOSH) for pushing the legislation forward.

Currently, there are 15.3 million smokers in Vietnam and 47.4 percent of adult males smoke. Following Vietnam, Cambodia and Indonesia are among the ASEAN countries which aim to have a tobacco control law passed soon, while the rest of ASEAN countries already have tobacco control laws in place.