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Needs of license sellers of tobacco

Retailers in Hong Kong sell cigarettes to minors in the face of tobacco control laws designed to protect children (“Most stores still selling cigarettes to teens”, January 25).

This is nothing new. Sting operations in Hong Kong from 1987 have shown the same thing – that retailers are flaunting the law.

Bans globally on sales to minors are not effective unless they are given real teeth.

The best way forward for Hong Kong is to license retailers to sell cigarettes. If they are then found to be selling cigarettes to those under age, they lose their cigarette licence.

It might also be an appropriate time to remove tobacco displays from their prominent positions in supermarkets and other stores.

Source: SCMP, Dr Judith Mackay, director, Asian Consultancy on Tobacco Control

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