April 12, 2011
As part of the Thrusday April 7 release of a draft plain packaging bill, the Australian government also announced that it would be increasing the size of picture warnings to 75% of the front and 90% of the back of cigarette packages, and a comparable size for other tobacco products.
This will result in Australia having the largest cigarette package health warnings in the world, with an average of 82.5% of the front and back. Taking into account the proposed measures for consultation in Australia and Canada, the new world rankings for size would be as follows (ranked as an average of the package front and back):
82.5% Australia (75% front, 90% back) (proposal in consultation period)
80% Uruguay (80% front, 80% back)
75% Canada (75% front, 75% back) (proposal in consultation period)
65% Mauritius (60% front, 70% back)
65% Mexico (30% front, 100% back)
Australia has not yet announced the content of its new picture warnings. The new size requirements are not contained in bill released on April 7. The new size and content will be implemented through a separate regulatory mechanism.