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Home > Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 152 - Tobacco Control Measures [31420/14] [Plain packaging].

[Oireachtas] Dail Eireann debate. Written answer 152 - Tobacco Control Measures [31420/14] [Plain packaging]. (15 Jul 2014)

External website: http://oireachtasdebates.oireachtas.ie/debates%20a...


 152. Deputy Terence Flanagan asked the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade if the issue of standardised packaging of tobacco products was raised with him by any US politicians on his recent visit to the US; if so, the person who raised this issue with him; the specific issues raised in relation to standardised packaging; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31420/14]

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade (Deputy Charles Flanagan): On 10th June 2014, the Government approved the publication of the Public Health (Standardised Packaging of Tobacco) Bill 2014 and the presentation of the Bill in the Seanad. The then Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade visited Washington D.C. from 17-19 June for a range of meetings and discussions with key political and Irish-American community figures on U.S. immigration reform-related matters. I can confirm that, in the course of that visit, the issue of standardised packaging of tobacco products in Ireland and its possible implications from an intellectual property perspective was raised with him by Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart of Florida.

I understand that my predecessor advised the Congressman that an important public health issue was involved, that the Government had accordingly authorised publication of the legislation in question and that the normal Oireachtas procedures, including in relation to Committee hearings and public consultations, would now be followed. He took note of the Congressman's views and undertook to convey them to the Minister for Health.

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