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Plans for UK smoking ban confirmed in King's Speech

Plans for UK smoking ban confirmed in King's Speech

Plans to ban smoking in the UK have been confirmed in the King's Speech at the opening of Parliament

Plans to ban smoking in the UK have been confirmed in the King's Speech.

King Charles III appeared in the House of Lords for the official opening of Parliament today (7 November).

During his announcement, his first since taking to the throne following Queen Elizabeth II's death last year, the 74-year-old went through the government's business for the upcoming year.

Charles listed the policies Rishi Sunak and his cabinet hope to get through before the inevitable election in the next 12 to 14 months.

As well as crime and housing, one of the biggest issues on the agenda is the smoking ban, which was announced earlier this year.

King Charles has confirmed the smoking ban that is set to come into place.

Under the proposed law, those born on or after 1 January 2009 would be banned from buying tobacco or cigarettes.

“If we are to do the right thing for our kids, we must try and stop teenagers taking up cigarettes in the first place,” Sunak said at the time.

“Because without a significant change thousands of children will start smoking in the coming years and have their lives cut short as a result.”

The move comes after New Zealand set about becoming smoke free by 2025.

The country's government passed a bill last year to ban those aged 14 and under from ever legally buying cigarettes.

King Charles said the Government would 'introduce legislation to create a smokefree generation by restricting the sale of tobacco … and restricting the sale and marketing of e-cigarettes to children'.

This will effectively raise the age of tobacco sale by one year every year, the Government said, to prevent this and future generations from ever taking up smoking in the first place.

The ban will see smoking phased out in the UK.
Mike Kemp/In Pictures via Getty Images

According to the UK Government, smoking costs the UK around £17 billion a year, including £10bn every year through lost productivity alone.

This is almost twice the £10bn that is curently raised through taxes on tobacco products, it's said.

It's predicted that if the government is successful in creating a 'smokefree generation', smoking rates among those aged 14 to 30 could be near zero by 2040.

During his speech, the monarch also said that there would be a 'further crackdown on youth vaping'.

A consultation has already begun on how to protect children while encouraging adult smokers to use vapes to quit.

It is asking people for their views on whether disposable vapes should be banned or restricted and whether more needs to be done on pricing.

Featured Image Credit: BBC/Pixabay

Topics: King Charles III, The Queen, UK News, Politics, Rishi Sunak, Health