Smoking in public is now banned in Mexico after a new law came into effect this week.
The new law also blocks tobacco products from being advertised, promoted, or used as a sponsor across Mexico.
It’s considered one of the toughest smoking laws in the world.
It means that smokers will be essentially confined to their homes to smoke.
People caught smoking in public places could be fined up to $AU796, while businesses that disobey new regulations could be docked over $31,000.
$80,000 fines are enforceable for businesses that break tobacco promotion rules.
The new laws were first approved in December 2021, before being finalised last year.
The Mexico representative of the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO), Dr Cristian Morales Fuhrimann, called the reforms an “historic step forward for Mexico”. He said it reaffirms the country as “one of the leaders in the fight against tobacco”.
The Director-General of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, welcomed “such a bold move on tobacco control”.
The national picture
PAHO said that tobacco-linked deaths account for 10% of total annual deaths in Mexico.
About 7.7% of the Mexican population are daily tobacco users. This figure has remained constant since 2009, after experiencing a sharp decline in the seven years prior.
New bans on public smoking and commercial tobacco exposure are consistent with the WHO’s tobacco control framework.