After the probable implementation of controversial regulation about Graphical Health Warning (GHW), Pakistan will be the 3rd country of the world that will be going to increase the maximum space for GHW on cigarette packets, ultimately affecting the revenue position and promotion of illicit trade in the country.
Sharing implications of the enhanced GHW, experts said that in developed countries of the world, a regulatory impact analysis is mandatory prior to the introduction of any regulations. The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) initiated this methodology. It is a systemic approach to critically assess the positive and negative impacts of proposed regulations. It also considers non-regulatory alternatives. The objective of this exercise is to have an evidence-based approach for policy making.
A global comparison of GHW revealed, it has been claimed that by increasing the size of health warnings on cigarette packs from 40 percent to 85 percent Pakistan would become only the 3rd country in the world to do so.
According to sources, Ministry of Finance has established an Inter-Ministerial Committee to review matters related to 85 per cent health warnings on cigarette packs. The obvious step for the said committee would be to call for and review the regulatory impact analysis in Pakistan. Experts believe that the inter-ministerial committee will review either current regulatory compliance environment allow achieving intended consequences of reducing smoking rates.