This timeline tracks events, such as, smoke-free law changes and campaigns over the 2020 – 2025 period.


COVID-19 Pandemic - Fear of the virus has triggered a lot of people to get healthier so some people are quitting smoking. But, lockdown has caused many to lose their jobs or businesses. The resulting stress has caused some people to take up smoking or smoke more.

Vaping legalised - A new law regulating vaping products passed on 5 August 2020. This will make it harder for some people, e.g. in rural areas to access a wide range of flavours and support to switch. The Government’s endorsement of vaping as a way to stop smoking will encourage many to give it a go.

QuitStrong campaign - A Government national mass media campaign encouraging people to stop smoking, including via vaping.

1 January 2021

Excise tax increase. Price of cigarettes goes up by 1.4%

7 March 2021

Vape to Quitstrong Campaign goes live. A Government national mass media campaign encouraging smokers to switch to vaping leading them to quit completely.

15 April 2021

New Associate Health Minister seeks comments on extreme ways to stop people smoking (e.g. inducing mass cold turkey)!