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‘Zhonghua’ tobacco advertisement in Shanghai: a descriptive study
  1. PinPin Zheng1,
  2. Xin Ge1,
  3. Haihong Qian2,
  4. Fan Wang1,
  5. Hua Fu1,
  6. Carla J Berg3,
  7. Michelle C Kegler3
  1. 1Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety, Ministry of Education, School of Public Health, Fudan University, Shanghai, PR China
  2. 2Medical College of Fudan University, Shanghai, PR China
  3. 3Department of Behavioral Sciences and Health Education, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, USA
  1. Correspondence to Hua Fu, Key Laboratory of Public Health Safety, Ministry of Education, School of Public Health, Fudan University, PO BOX 248, 138 Yixueyuan Road, Shanghai 200032, PR China; hfu{at}


Objective To document tobacco advertising practices of a popular, high-grade, domestic cigarette in China across a broad spectrum of channels.

Methods Media monitoring and direct observations were conducted to assess tobacco advertisements for Zhonghua cigarettes in Shanghai, China, through the following channels: newspapers, TV, internet, outdoor advertisements and point-of-sale advertisements.

Results Consistent with the national ban, no direct tobacco advertisements were found in newspapers or on TV. However, statements about counterfeit ‘Zhonghua’ cigarettes indirectly promoted Zhonghua tobacco through newspapers. Although no tobacco advertisements were found in Shanghai mainstream websites or in channels of national mainstream sites, a great amount of information was communicated about Zhonghua cigarettes via websites, using patriotic themes and associations with Chinese culture. Large outdoor tobacco advertisements of ‘Loving my China’ were found in downtown Shanghai. Zhonghua tobacco advertisements were present in almost all of the points-of-sale observed (95%).

Conclusions Zhonghua cigarettes are promoted directly and indirectly through a variety of channels. This study suggests there is an urgent need to establish comprehensive bans that prohibit all types of tobacco advertisements in China.

  • Advertising and Promotion
  • Tobacco industry
  • Low/Middle income country
  • Public policy

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