My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Health announced on 16 April the Government’s consultation on standardised packaging for tobacco products, Official Report, column 11WS. A large number of responses have already been received from a variety of individuals and organisations.
The Government have been asked to provide more time for people to respond to the consultation. We want to maximise the opportunity that people have to provide their views and evidence.
The Government are, therefore, extending the consultation period for an extra month. The new closing date of the consultation is Friday, 10 August 2012.Through this consultation, we are exploring whether action on tobacco packaging has the potential to bring public health benefits over and above those from our current initiatives. The Government have an entirely open mind on standardised packaging, and want to know more about the possible benefits and consequences of taking action in this area.
Any decisions to take further policy action on tobacco packaging will be taken only after full consideration is given to consultation responses, evidence and other relevant information.