British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Wednesday proposed raising the legal age at which people can buy cigarettes by one year each year until they become illegal for everyone in the UK, in a bid to phase out smoking among young people. I hope that.
Explaining his plans at the Conservative Party’s annual conference, Mr Sunak said: “We want to stop teenagers from smoking in the first place,” adding that repeated increases in sales laws over the years meant “today’s 14-year-olds It means you can never legally smoke.” You’ll be sold cigarettes. ”
It is currently illegal to sell tobacco or tobacco products to people under the age of 18 across the UK.
Mr Sunak’s office said the phased changes would mean children turning 14 this year and younger children would no longer be able to legally sell cigarettes in the UK.
If Parliament approves the proposals, the law changes would only apply to England and not Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales.
“People start smoking when they’re young. Four out of five smokers have started smoking by the age of 20,” he says. “The vast majority of people then try to quit smoking. If we can break that cycle and stop it from starting, we are on the way to ending the number one cause of preventable death and disease in this country.” You will walk in this direction.”
The government says smoking will not be criminalized and the gradual changes mean people who can legally buy cigarettes now will not be able to do so in the future.
Official figures show the number of people smoking in the UK has fallen by two-thirds since the 1970s, but around 6.4 million people in the country – around 13% of the population – still smoke.
In 2007, the UK government raised the legal age for selling tobacco from 16 to 18. This has led to a 30% reduction in smoking rates among 16- and 17-year-olds, Sunak’s office said.
Health experts have welcomed the Prime Minister’s plan to steadily raise the legal smoking age. Similar measures were approved in New Zealand last year.
“The Government’s plan to introduce ‘smokeless power’ legislation is significant in that tobacco products, the only legally available products, will kill more than half of lifetime users if used as intended. “This could be a decisive legacy that corrects 100 years of wrongs,” said Lion Shahab, an academic who co-directs the Tobacco and Alcohol Research Group at University College London.
Mr Sunak also said the government would introduce measures to restrict the use of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) for children. It is currently illegal to sell e-cigarettes to children under 18 in the UK, but authorities say the number of young people using e-cigarettes has tripled in the past three years and now outnumbers smokers. The number of children smoking e-cigarettes is increasing.
Officials will consider options such as regulating flavored e-cigarettes and regulating packaging and point-of-sale displays to make the products less appealing to young people.