Mexico bans smoking in public places

Mexico introduced a total ban on smoking in public spaces, including parks, beaches, hotels and restaurants. The ban is effective since Sunday 15 January and is one of the toughest anti-tobacco laws in the world.

Advertising, promotion and sponsorship of tobacco products are also prohibited as the decreet aims to “establish the control, promotion and sanitary surveillance” of these products. “The direct or indirect display of tobacco products at points of sale is prohibited,” the Ministry stated regarding the new law. Additionally, there are new, stricter regulations that apply to vapes and e-cigarettes, specifically indoors.

According to statistics in Mexico, 16.4% of adults (age 15+) are current tobacco smokers and 14.6% of youth (age 13-15) currently smoke cigarettes. As per the Pan American Health Organization tobacco use accounts for 15% of deaths from cardiovascular disease, 24% of deaths from cancer, and 45% of deaths from chronic respiratory disease in the Americas each year. The organization praised the ban stating: “this amendment represents a historic step forward for Mexico in its anti-smoking policies and reaffirms its role as one of the leaders in the fight against tobacco in the world.”

Currently the price of a cigarettes pack in Mexico is approximately 63 Mexican pesos, about 3 euros. The country also grows the plant, in 2021 it produced more than 17 thousand metric tons. Overall, in the Latin America and the Caribbean region, smoking prevalence has been reduced in the last few decades as a result of the regional tobacco control efforts. PAHO estimates that “between 2007 and 2015, the prevalence of tobacco smoking dropped from 22.1% to 17.4%, a greater drop than that recorded globally.” Additionally, the region “is the only WHO region expected to achieve a 30% relative reduction in the prevalence of current tobacco use by 2025.”