Minimum Cigarette Price Hike To RM9
In line with its initiatives against smoking among Malaysians, the Government has increased the minimum price for a pack of cigarettes from RM7 to RM9, effective August 1, 2015.
This is the first hike on the minimum cigarette price since September 2012, when the minimum price was set at RM7, and the number of sticks per pack was standardised to 20.
The minimum price will be further increased to RM10 on August 1, 2016.
Health Minister Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam said this decision was agreed to by the steering committee of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC). In line with Malaysia’s pledge on the FCTC, which was signed in 2003, the steering committee had agreed to strengthen several aspects of tobacco control as outlined in the treaty.
Besides the price hike, the committee has also agreed to gazette all public parks and public areas in national parks as no-smoking zones. These include campsites, canopy walks and observation towers that has a high concentration of people. These does not include outdoor car park areas.
Under current regulations, air-conditioned eateries can designate one-third of its premises as a smoking area. Today, the committee also agreed to declare air-conditioned eateries as non-smoking areas.
For now, the implementation of these non-smoking areas will be under ‘educational enforcement’, and the ministry hopes to fully enforce the rule by January 1, 2016.