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World first tobacco control legislation passed.



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Media Release Dr Michael Wooldridge Minister for Health and Aged Care

MW100/00 2 November 2000

WORLD FIRST TOBACCO CONTROL LEGISLATION PASSED The Federal Minister for Health and Aged Care, Dr Wooldridge today welcomed the passage of the Tobacco Advertising Prohibition Amendment Bill 2000, which severs the last remaining link between sport and tobacco advertising.

The legislation which passed through the Senate yesterday - thanks to the cooperation of Senator Allison and the Australian Democrats - has delivered a sensible policy outcome which reinforces Australia's position as a world leader in tobacco control.

"The passage of this Bill places Australia at the forefront of international tobacco control as Australia becomes one of the first nations in the world to completely ban tobacco advertising at international sporting and cultural events," Dr Wooldridge said.

"No other country has fully removed the connection between tobacco advertising and sport sponsorship. This is a major public health policy achievement and Australia can be proud of its leadership in tobacco control measures," said Dr Wooldridge.

The Tobacco Advertising Prohibition Act 1992 allowed for a handful of major international events to be exempt under Section 18. From 1 October 2006 there will be no tobacco sponsorship of any international sporting and cultural events held in Australia.

This legislation represents the results of successful negotiations with the major sporting bodies and key stakeholders. The Federation Internationale d'Automobile has provided assurances that Australia will not lose major events, like the Grand Prix, as a result of the phasing out of tobacco sponsorship.

Dr Wooldridge said that, during the phase out period, he will maintain the tight restrictions applying to each event and ensure that the public's exposure to the remaining forms of tobacco advertising is kept to a minimum.

"The Coalition promised this legislation as part of its 1998 election policy and I am proud to be able to deliver it as part of the Government's internationally recognised National Tobacco Strategy which is aimed at reducing the incidence of smoking in Australia," Dr Wooldridge said.

Media Contact: Craig Simonetto, Office of Dr Wooldridge 02 6277 7220

Radio Journalists please note that Dr Wooldridge has provided some comments which can be accessed by dialling 02 6289 3010.

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©Commonwealth of Australia, 2000

Published on Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care web site 2 November 2000 Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care URL: http://www.health.gov.au/mediarel/yr2000/mw/mw20100.htm