The Gulf Standardisation Organisation (GSO) issued a new technical regulation related to tobacco product packaging (GSO 246/2011) in August 2011, with an implementation date on importation across the GCC as of August 9th 2012.
Current health warning consists of a text health warning making up 10% of the front of the pack in Arabic and English.
As a socially responsible company and a highly professional leader within the industry, British American Tobacco Middle East is carrying out awareness campaigns to distributors and retailers throughout the implementation phase.
What is the new law?
The new GCC regulation concerning health warnings on cigarette packs consists of:
- Pictorial Health Warning occupying 50% of the pack space, front and back. 60% of the Health warning will be pictorial and 40% will be text.
- Arabic health warning on the front of the pack and English on the back.
- Three pictorial health warnings will appear on all cigarette packs across all GCC markets.
- The same picture will appear on the front and back of the pack with its corresponding text health warning in Arabic and English.
- The regulation applies to all cigarette packs, all brands included.
- Outers will continue carrying the text health warning.
What does it mean for Retailers?
No change in ordering process
All cigarette products manufactured or imported into the GCC markets as from August 9, 2012 will carry a “pictorial health warning”. Due to several reasons linked to production and logistics, some brands will comply earlier than others with this new legislation. There is no change in the ordering process and retailers can continue to order cigarette products as usual.
The product itself has not changed. The same high standards of product quality as before are guaranteed.