Australian Government Welcomes New Zealand Tobacco Move
Health Minister Tanya Plibersek and Attorney General Mark Dreyfus have welcomed the news that New Zealand will join Australia with plans to introduce tobacco plain-packaging laws.
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The Hon Tanya Plibersek MP19 February 2013
Minister for Health
The Hon Mark Dreyfus QC MP
Minister for Emergency Management
Health Minister Tanya Plibersek and Attorney General Mark Dreyfus today welcomed the news that New Zealand will join Australia with plans to introduce tobacco plain-packaging laws.
“We are absolutely delighted the New Zealand government has joined Australia in putting the health and welfare of its citizens ahead of profits for Big Tobacco,” said Ms Plibersek.
“Plain-packaging laws mean tobacco companies cannot use their products as mobile billboards -- a successful marketing technique when it comes to recruiting young people as smokers.”
Ms Plibersek said Australia’s plain-packaging laws had made headlines across the world and she was hopeful even more countries will join us.
“We are proud of this reform and congratulate New Zealand for standing up for the health of its citizens. Australia will continue to vigorously defend its plain packaging measures at the WTO or in any other forum where they may be contested. Our measures are anti-cancer, not anti-trade,” said Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus.
Australia was taking a broad approached to reduced smoking rates, which included new elements such as:
- The plain-packaging laws, which came into force on 1 December, removed tobacco company logos and include new and larger graphic health warnings.
- The free Quit Now: My QuitBuddy app and the Quit for You, Quit for Two app for pregnant women, which have been downloaded more than 60,000 times since their introduction last year.
- The listing of nicotine patches on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme, which in 2013 cuts the price of patches down to just $5.90 a month for concessional patients or $36.10 a month for general patients.
- The national telephone counselling service Quitline on 13 78 48 is available even during the holiday period. The Quit Now website (www.quitnow.gov.au) has many tips and information to help people quit, including the Quit Now Calculator.
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