Good to ban shop displays of tobacco products

I applaud the move to remove all tobacco products from sight in stores ("No more shop displays of tobacco items by 2017"; yesterday), as I have many relatives, friends and former colleagues who are hardcore smokers and have been trying hard to quit smoking, but without much success.

Studies have also found that tobacco products which are prominently displayed at retail stores, usually behind the cashier counters, will attract non-smokers or people who smoke only occasionally to find out more about the different brands and prices of cigarettes packets, as people are usually attracted by visual displays to purchase such products.

I hope the Government will consider increasing "sin taxes" on items such as tobacco and alcohol, to discourage people - especially youth and the low-income - from taking up unhealthy habits.

Muhammad Dzul Azhan Haji Sahban

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 11, 2015, with the headline 'Good to ban shop displays of tobacco products'. Print Edition | Subscribe