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Race is on for five per cent status

| December 13, 2012

Could the latest and greatest threat to the tobacco industry come from a race to the bottom by cities and countries competing to have the lowest incidence of smoking?

An opinion piece in the South China Morning Post has suggested thatHong Kongcould become the world’s first city to be declared tobacco ‘smoke-free’.

Tobacco smoking among those over 15 years of age is currently confined to just 11-12 per cent of the city’s population and ‘smoke-free’ is declared when that figure falls below five per cent.

But Hong Kong believes that Australia, with its plain packaging law that came into force at the beginning of this month, might steal its thunder.

The opinion piece, while recognizing that previous anti-tobacco policies have reduced smoking inHong Kong, suggested that more could be done to ensure compliance with existing tobacco laws.

And finally it asked: ‘Do we really need to wait and see how the Australian initiative turns out before considering further measures?’

Category: Breaking News

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