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New Zealand Bans Smoking: Young People Will NOT Be Able To Smoke

Health

New Zealand Bans Smoking: Young People Will NOT Be Able To Smoke

A whole new generation will be unfamiliar with smoking.

New Zealand will be banning the sale of cigarettes to anyone born after 2008 as part of its major endeavor to eradicate smoking from the country. Along with it are restrictions to reduce the number of outlets that are allowed to sell cigarettes and to reduce the number of addictive substances in them.

Associate Health Minister Ayesha Verrall shares a positive outlook on the radical law, “Thousands of people will live longer, healthier lives and the health system will be $5 billion ($A4.7 billion) better off from not needing to treat the illnesses caused by smoking.”

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New Zealand aims to achieve a “Smoke-free” country by first banning anyone who is 14 or younger. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern added, “I hope New Zealand feels really proud of what’s happening here in parliament, the forward momentum on our Smokefree New Zealand goals and the Smokefree generation.”

“That is hugely innovative and a real credit to the minister and the Smokefree community which has been working so hard on such ideas in this bill.”

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New Zealand set this goal in 2011 and over a decade later, they’ve shown great progress with this law being their latest move. From 16.4%, the number of regular Kiwi smokers has gone down to 8% in 2021 and they aim to bring this down to below 5% for the overall population in the future.

Among native tribes, Maori is reported to have the highest percentage of daily smoking rates. The Prime Minister added, “These measures … will close the life expectancy gap for Maori women by 25% and by 10% for Maori men.”

The opposition center-right party chose not to support the legislation and argued that local stores would be devastated as their income would be reduced.

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Only 600 retailers in 2023 will be allowed to sell cigarettes, a tremendous drop from 6000 this year. Opposition health spokesman Shane Reti said, “Our position on this bill has been to achieve nicotine reduction with the least collateral damage possible. Sounds reasonable, doesn’t it?”

Dr. Verrall slammed them, “I don’t understand how Dr. Reti can rely on his medical credibility as National’s health spokesperson anymore.”

More people have also switched to vaping with the restriction around smoking tightening.

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Australians have also been expressing their wish for the same ban to be enforced there. Prices of cigarettes have been going up by 10% every year with graphic images used as warnings on the packaging.

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