Jul 6, 2020

We might have to say goodbye to cigarettes and liquor being sold online soon—because the Department of Finance (DOF) announced that they are eyeing the ban of these “sin products” from online shopping platforms.

According to DOF Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, this ban aims to prevent the possibility of minors getting their hands on these products. As per Presidential Decree No. 1619 from 1979, persons under the age of 18 are prohibited to purchase “volatile substances that induce intoxication.” 

Meanwhile, the Tobacco Regulation Act of 2003 “prohibits the purchase and sale of cigarettes and other tobacco products to and by minors and in certain places frequented by minors.”

However, the Act currently only prevents cigarette companies from advertising on the internet, but not selling products online. 

Prior to the ban, e-commerce platform Lazada puts a notice on the pages of these product categories which requires buyers to confirm that they are “at least 18 years old to enter.” 

Moreover, cigarette company PMFTC Inc., a merger of Philip Morris International Inc. and Lucio Tan’s Fortune Tobacco, implements strict measures on their retailers who are required to verify their buyers’ ages. According to communications director Dave Gomez, retailers must double-check the ages of buyers by asking for government-issued identification cards upon delivery.

Gomez said, “We understand the concern and agree that cigarettes should not be sold to minors, even online. Minors should not smoke, period.”

“For online commerce, resellers of cigarettes should strictly observe youth-access prevention by having age-gating on their sites and require proof of age upon delivery. This is our policy,” he added.

Upon Metro Manila’s shift to general community quarantine, most cities lifted the liquor bans implemented when the region was under enhanced community quarantine.

However, while allowing the sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages again, it is still strictly prohibited to drink in public places everywhere.


Header image by 4924546 from Pixabay

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TAGS: alcohol Cigarette Department of Finance liquor liquor online ban online business online seller online shopping sin products sin products online ban