The Necessity for Amending the Laws and Regulations on Tobacco Control in Taiwan
In 2004, the World Health Organization introduced the“ Framework Convention on Tobacco Control” (FCTC), which established the basic guidelines for tobacco control. In 2005, Taiwan Legislative Yuan ratified FCTC, which was implemented mainly in the Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act and the Tobacco and Alcohol Tax Act. In 2007, the amendment of the Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act was passed, and took effect in 2009. Adult smoking rates and cigarettes consumption have all declined since then. However, they soon idled for many years until the Government raised the cigarette tax for NT$20 per pack in June 2017. While the tobacco control result shows sluggish, several serious incidences occurred: (1) Japanese tobacco industry in 2015 set up factories in Taiwan; (2) the DPP lost the election in 2017 and proposed the tax reduction on tobacco; (3) the secret service personnel smuggled thousands of tax-free cigarettes in 2019. The Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act and the Tobacco and Alcohol Tax Act need to be amended in accordance with the FCTC as soon as possible.