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    Belgium will ban all tobacco advertising from 2021

    Most of the advertising for tobacco products has been banned since 1999. Credit: Pixabay

    All forms of tobacco advertising in Belgium will be banned from January 2021.

    Currently, newsagent’s shops are still allowed to advertise tobacco products in the store, and on the facades. However, the parliament voted unanimously that all these forms of advertising will also be abolished, reports VRT.

    Most of the advertising for tobacco products has been banned since 1999. The government’s aim is to discourage smoking as it is still the main cause of lung cancers that every person can choose to avoid. However, the legislation still allowed a few exceptions.

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    Until 2021, advertising for tobacco products will still be allowed “on posters in and on the facade of the tobacco shops as well as newsagent’s shops selling tobacco products.” The posters, however, are also displayed in the vicinity of secondary schools and could encourage young people to start smoking.

    All parties agreed on the scrapping of that exception in the Health Commission, reports Het Nieuwsblald.

    Smoking in cars will also be forbidden when children younger than 18 are on board. That ban was already in force, but the age limit has gone up from 16. As the legal age to buy tobacco has also gone up from 16 to 18 in Belgium recently, the initiators thought it logical to align both age limits.

    Maïthé Chini
    The Brussels Times