A Hsinchu City Public Health Bureau undercover sting operation targeted local convenience stores and other places that sell tobacco, attempting to see which clerks would sell cigarettes and other tobacco products to minors, as teens’ demand for tobacco might increase during summer break.
Of the 222 tobacco retailers visited city-wide, 44.1% betel nut stands and 39.35% convenience stores were caught selling cigarettes to underage decoys in the operation conducted from July to August. The Bureau will continue to hold undercover sting operations and strengthen retailers’ awareness of tobacco control and tell the clerks to help reducing underage tobacco use.
According to Article 13 of Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act in Taiwan, no person, including places that sell tobacco, family, relatives, friends and peers, shall provide tobacco products to persons under the age of eighteen. This regulation not only limits tobacco sales but forbids acquisition and exchange of cigarettes among teens. Violators guilty of giving cigarettes to minors will be fined between NTD10,000 (USD334) and NTD50,000 (USD1,667).