Bulgaria to Restrict Tobacco Products AdvertisingHealth | March 8, 2011, Tuesday // 13:52| views
Bulgaria has one of the highest smokers' rates in the EU at some 39% of people declaring themselves daily smokers, topped only by Greece at 42%. File photo
Advertisement of tobacco products in Bulgaria will be strongly restricted, according to the new National Program for Limiting Smoking in 2011-2015, prepared by the Health Ministry.
Effective 2011, there will be a ban on the production of any items such as toys or food resembling cigarettes and other tobacco products.
In 2013, there will be a ban on all forms of direct and indirect tobacco advertisement, such as displaying cigarettes and images of them in stores while the sale of tobacco products will be limited to specialized stores only. The same year, measures will be applied to restrict the showing of people smoking in Bulgarian movies, TV series and various broadcasts.
Cigarette manufacturers will be mandated to account for the exact amount of funds used for advertisement, and will not be allowed to sponsor social events. The program will also ban the use of additives aiming at improving the aroma and the taste of cigarettes.
The full ban on smoking in indoor public spaces legislation will be ready by 2012 with the goal to reduce passive smoking as well. Other measures include keeping high cigarette prices and campaigns to teach about the harmful effects of smoking.
The new rules on smoking entered in effect on December 19, 2010. According to these rules, indoor smoking in restaurants, clubs, bars, hotels, railroad stations, airports, malls, offices and schools is allowed only in separate spaces with closing doors.
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