The Senate rejects a law restricting alcohol and tobacco consumption

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Today 13 June, the 27th plenary session of the Senate of the Oliy Majlis (Parliament) of the Republic of Uzbekistan considered the law «On the restriction of circulation and consumption of alcohol and tobacco products».

The law incorporates provisions of the law “On the restriction of smoking of hookah and electronic cigarettes in public places” and other laws.  Thus, it is implied that they have lost their power.

However, at a plenary session, the members of the Senate decided to reject the law because of the need to clarify the basic concepts of the law, the presence of contradictory norms, and the lack of in-depth study of the law enforcement practice.

Several problems were cited as the main reasons for refusal.  In particular, awareness-raising and prevention work on the harmful use of alcohol and tobacco should be carried out only among minors, and the sale and consumption of such products should be prohibited for persons under 21 years of age. As a result, the law excludes persons over 18 years of age and persons under 21 years of age.

The law also includes the concepts of “nosvoy” (a type of substance), “tobacco snus” and “nicotine snus” in the list of non-smoking tobacco products.  A separate paragraph explains the concept of «nosvoy» but does not explain the concepts of “tobacco snus” and “nicotine snus”, other new types of tobacco products, their differences were not explained.

The law stipulates when it is possible to advertise only natural and sparkling wines produced in the Republic of Uzbekistan.

However, Article 39 of the law “On advertising” of 7 June of the current year provides that beer advertising is allowed alongside natural and sparkling wines. This causes a conflict of norms.  Accordingly, it is necessary to bring the relevant norms of the law in accordance with the law “On advertising”.

Given the importance of the law and its current relevance, it was stated that the law would be re-introduced into the agenda of the regular plenary session of the Senate after consideration of the shortcomings identified by the Legislative Chamber of Uzbekistan.

Diyora Abdurahmonova Shaxzod Nusratulloyev
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