Malaysia Submits Revised Tobacco Control Bill to Parliament for First Reading

The Malaysian Ministry of Health has presented the “Public Health Tobacco Control Act 2023” to the lower house of Parliament, marking the third submission of the bill. The Parliament is set to conduct its first reading on the proposed legislation.

Reportedly, the revised bill omits provisions such as “Generation Smoke-Free” (GEG), which would have prohibited the sale and use of tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, based on age.

The initial version of the bill was introduced by former Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin in 2022 and was re-submitted in June following the formation of the coalition government after the 2022 elections. However, the version proposed in June was withdrawn by Health Minister Zaleha.

The new version of the bill prohibits the sale of tobacco products, smoking substances, or alternative tobacco products to minors and restricts the provision of any smoking services. Section 17(1) of the bill explicitly forbids minors from smoking, chewing, or using any tobacco products or alternative tobacco products.

Earlier, Zaleha took to social media to announce the historic moment, stating that the submission of the revised bill is the first step towards regulating tobacco products in the country.

“This is a comprehensive bill aimed at regulating the use of e-cigarettes in our country and addressing existing legal loopholes,” she remarked.

The proposed legislation reflects Malaysia’s commitment to public health and signifies a milestone in the ongoing efforts to strengthen tobacco control measures. The bill is expected to undergo thorough parliamentary scrutiny in the coming sessions.