Table 3

Tobacco-related actions among key ministries (2014–2020)

MinistryTobacco policy focusIndicative policy actions/statements
HealthProtect citizens from risks to health.
  • Implemented regulation for managing conflict of interest with tobacco companies within the ministry.

  • Signed joint regulation with the Ministry of Interior to implement smoke-free areas nationwide.

  • Inclusion of larger health warnings on cigarette packaging.

  • Officially petitioned Ministry of Communications and Information to enforce tobacco advertising and portrayal in media regulations on the internet.

FinanceOversee creation and implementation of tax and excise policy.
  • Chose to delay tax increases on tobacco products scheduled for 2019.

  • Issued statements highlighting key role of the tobacco industry in generating government revenue and outlining budget concerns if cigarette consumption decrease led to decreased tax revenue.

  • Increased cost of cigarettes by mandating a minimum sale price per cigarette.

  • Increased cigarette excise by 23% in 2020.

  • Increased cigarette excise by 12.5% for 2021.

  • Has made moves to develop clearer e-cigarette tax and excise regulations.

Trade and IndustryProtect jobs and industries that generate employment.
  • Released multiple public statements supporting cigarette manufacturers with respect to employment generated.

  • Created a proindustry tobacco ‘road map’ that would have seen production increase over time.

Information and CommunicationOversee advertising and portrayals in media.
  • Was not actively monitoring cigarette portrayals in online forums, which was their responsibility, but corrected this after a Ministry of Health request to improve oversight in online portrayals of cigarettes and smoking.

Education and CultureProtect the health of students.
  • Regulated smoking and tobacco-related advertising in learning environments.

  • Smoke-free areas on all school grounds.

InteriorCoordinate enforcement of national laws at the local level.
  • Created a joint agreement to facilitate smoke-free areas at subnational levels.

AgricultureProtect farmers.
  • Issued statements against increase of taxes on tobacco products, citing negative impact on tobacco farmers.

  • Created regulations to safeguard local tobacco production and sales.

  • Has chosen not to prioritise programmes to support tobacco farmers who want to shift to other crops.