Parliament OKs restrictions on advertising

By: Vusala Abbasova

The Azerbaijani Parliament adopted a draft law “On Advertising” in the third reading at a plenary session last week.

The bill envisages a number of new procedures related to the advertising of alcoholic beverages, medical services for abortion, advertising on the covers of textbooks, drugs, weapons and outdoor advertising.

MP Vahid Ahmedov, member of the parliamentary committee on economic policy, said that some proposals sounded by parliamentarians were taken into account in the first and second reading of the bill. The document put a clear distinction between the concepts of social and commercial advertising.

MP Azay Guliyev proposed that social advertising should be free and his colleague Ganira Pashayev supported him.

Ali Masimli offered to distribute public social advertising in the daytime when more people are watching television. The proposal was supported by Siyavush Novruzov, who added that it would be better to allocate a certain time to such advertisements.

MP Govhar Bakhshaliyeva noted that some advertisements like promoting sunflower seeds are incorrect from a medical point of view, while Gudrat Hasanguliyev underlined the need to ban the advertising of gambling.

The bill implies a ban on advertising on the covers of textbooks, teaching materials, school diaries, notebooks, albums, and books intended for minors. In addition, the prohibition applies on a number of products and alcoholic beverages in the publications intended for minors.

Moreover, advertising will be forbidden during theatrical performances and film shows. The bill prohibits placing advertising banners on the buildings of the state and municipal authorities, as well as historical and architectural monuments.

Advertising of all types of military weapons and military equipment (except sporting guns) is strictly banned.

There are also some restrictions on the advertising of hunting and sporting weapons. They can only be promoted by specialized printed publications, as well as areas designated for the sale, demonstration and testing of such weapons. The bill also prohibits the advertisement of fireworks.

Similar advertising bans were introduced in relation to medicines in February, 2015.

SOURCE: Azer News