Guatemala became a Party to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on February 14, 2006.
Smoke Free Places
Smoking is prohibited anywhere in workplaces and closed public places. There is one limited exemption to the complete indoor smoking ban for hotel and motel guest rooms. Smoking is also prohibited on all public transportation.
Tobacco Advertising, Promotion and Sponsorship
Tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship is generally allowed, with a few restrictions on some forms of tobacco advertising. Tobacco advertising may not air during “children’s programming hours.” In addition, tobacco advertising may not show consumption of tobacco products and may not use human models, cartoons, sports athletes, or public figures. All advertising must be approved prior to release. Health warnings are required on all advertising.
Tobacco Packaging and Labeling
One of five text health warnings must occupy 25 percent of the front surface of the pack. The warning “Use of this product causes serious health damage” must be printed on the side of the pack. The size of the side panel warning is not specified.
Cigarette Contents and Disclosures
The law grants the authority to regulate the contents of cigarettes; however, no subsequent regulations have been issued. The law does not require that manufacturers and importers disclose to government authorities information on the contents or emissions of their products.
The law does not prohibit the sale of tobacco products via vending machines or the internet. The law prohibits the sale of single cigarettes and small packets of cigarettes. The sale of tobacco products is prohibited to persons under the age of 18.
Roadmap to Tobacco Control Legislation
Decree No. 90-97 of the Congress of the Republic of Guatemala is the Health Code of the Republic of Guatemala. It governs many aspects of public health and services, including tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship; tobacco packaging and labeling; and restrictions on smoking. Decree No. 74-2008 (Law Creating Tobacco Smoke Free Environments) repealed some smoking provisions in Decree No. 90-97 (the Health Code) and is now the main law governing smoking in public places, workplaces, and public transportation. It establishes a complete smoking ban in indoor areas, with the exception of some hotel guestrooms. Government Agreement No. 137-2009 (Regulations of Decree No. 74-2008) was issued under Decree No. 74-2008 to implement the prohibition on smoking in indoor places.
Government Agreement No. 338-2013 (Health Standard Regulations for the Authorization and Monitoring of Tobacco-Product Advertising) implements provisions on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship. It repealed Government Agreement No. 426-2001 and has since been amended by Government Agreement No. 299-2014.
This country’s legal measures were reviewed by our legal staff in consultation with in-country lawyers or tobacco control experts.