New Zealand bans sale of tobacco to future generations under new anti-smoking laws
As part of the newly passed laws, retailers are banned from selling tobacco to anyone born on or after 1 January 2009.
New Zealand has introduced a strict new anti-smoking bill, which is designed to prevent the sale of tobacco to future generations.
Under the legislation passed by the country's parliament, retailers will not be allowed sell to tobacco to anyone born on or after 1 January 2009.
People who fall into this category will then never be able to legally purchase tobacco.
As well as this, the amount of nicotine that is allowed in smoked tobacco products will be reduced, while the number of retailers able to sell tobacco will decrease.
Regarding the latter, the number of New Zealand retailers that can sell tobacco will drop by 90%, going from 6,000 to 600 by the end of next year.
The anti-smoking laws are among the strictest in the world.
In a statement, the New Zealand Government said the country's smoking rate is already low, with just 8% of adults smoking daily.
This is down from 9.4% a year ago and half the rate compared to 10 years ago.
The number of people smoking fell by 56,000 over the past year.
New Zealand's Associate Health Minister Dr Ayesha Verrall has said the Smokefree Environments and Regulated Products (Smoked Tobacco) Amendment Bill will create an entire smoke-free generation and will save thousands of lives.
“This legislation accelerates progress towards a smokefree future,” she stated.
“Thousands of people will live longer, healthier lives and the health system will be $5billion better off from not needing to treat the illnesses caused by smoking, such as numerous types of cancer, heart attacks, strokes, and amputations."
In Ireland, adult smoking rates now stand at around 18%.