CONFERENCE PROCEEDING
Loopholes of total ban of tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship in Hong Kong
Lawrence Chu 1  
,   Antonio Kwong 1,   Vienna Lai 1,   Man-Ping Wang 2,   Tai-Hing Lam 3
 
More details
Hide details
1
Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health, Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR PRC
2
School of Nursing, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR PRC
3
School of Public Health, The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR PRC
CORRESPONDING AUTHOR
Lawrence Chu   

Hong Kong Council on Smoking and Health, Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR PRC
Publication date: 2021-09-02
 
Tob. Induc. Dis. 2021;19(Suppl 1):A114
 
KEYWORDS
ABSTRACT
Introduction:
Hong Kong has been regulating tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship (TAPS) since 1982. Tobacco advertising through mass media and tobacco brand name sponsorship have been banned, but not point-of-sale product displays and smoking scenes in mass media, leaving loopholes for tobacco promotion.

Objectives:
To examine the exposure to point-of-sale tobacco product displays and smoking scenes from mass media in Hong Kong adults.

Methods:
Tobacco Control Policy-related Survey 2017 collected data from adults aged 15 years or above (N=5,131) in Hong Kong, including a random subset of respondents (N=1,546; mean age 46.4±19.4 years; 43.8% male) who answered questions on past 30-day exposure to point-of-sale tobacco product displays and smoking scenes from mass media. They also answered whether they considered the point-of-sale displays and smoking scenes as pro-smoking to young people, and the displays as advertisements. Data were weighted by age, sex and smoking status.

Results:
The subset of respondents contained 287 current smokers, 420 ex-smokers and 839 never smokers. Over half (64.0%) were exposed to point-of-sale tobacco product displays, including 34.6% being often exposed. Overall, nearly half (42.9%) considered the displays as pro-smoking to young people, and majority (74.9%) considered them as advertisements. Exposure to smoking scenes was reported by 63.5% of respondents, including 15.9% being often exposed. The exposure was 52.8% in current smokers and 65.1% in never smokers. Many respondents considered the smoking scenes (70.2%) as pro-smoking to young people.

Conclusions:
The loopholes in the TAPS regulations in Hong Kong have left majority of the population directly or indirectly exposed to tobacco promotion. Display of cigarette packs and brand elements at point-of-sale in glamorous light boxes and display racks becomes the strategy of tobacco advertisements. The Government should ban point-of-sale tobacco product displays and smoking scenes in mass media to plug the loopholes and discourage smoking.

eISSN:1617-9625