Senate ratifies bill on graphic health warnings on cigarettes
MANILA, Philippines – The Senate ratified on Wednesday a bicameral conference report on a measure, mandating the printing of graphic health warnings on cigarette packs.
No senator objected when a motion to ratify the bicameral report on the bill was made on the floor.
Once ratified by both chambers of the Senate and the House of Representatives, the proposed measure will then be transmitted to President Aquino for signature.
It was Senator Pia Cayetano, who reported the bicameral report on the floor.
“It’s my pleasure to report back to the body that after seven long years, the bill mandating graphic health warnings on tobacco products is on its way to enactment following the approval of the reconciled versions by the bicameral conference committee in a meeting held yesterday (Tuesday),” said Cayetano.
Cayetano said among the highlights of the measure was that the graphic health warning should cover 50 percent of the principal display of any tobacco package without any use of borders or frame which will effectively lessen the size of the warnings.
The graphic warning, she said, should be put at the bottom portion of the package “but this is without prejudice to the provision of the law which prohibits the obstruction of the graphic health warnings whenever the package is commercially displayed.”
She said the printing should also in four colors so that the graphics are “vivid and contrast with the background of the package or the logo.”
The bill also requires that a text warning describing the graphic warnings should occupy 20 percent of the entire area of the graphic health warning and should be printed in Filipino on the front panel and English on the back panel.
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