SINGAPORE, Oct. 10 (Xinhua) -- Six retailers, including two 7-Eleven outlets in Singapore, have had their tobacco retail licenses suspended for six months for selling cigarettes to persons under 18, the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) said Wednesday.
Among them are two 7-Eleven outlets at Punggol and Anchorvale. The other four retailers are: SM Mart at 38 Teban Gardens Road, Ibrahim Trading at 411 Commonwealth Avenue West, Gui Bin Minimart at 296A Bukit Batok Street 22 and Big Retail Supermarkets at 764 Choa Chu Kang North 5.
Sales people at the affected outlets did not ask for any identification to check the buyers' age, claiming that they were busy or that the buyers looked older than they were, HSA said in a statement.
"Sellers take the risk of contravening the laws if they assess age by mere physical appearance of the buyer," HAS added.
Anyone caught selling tobacco products to those aged below 18, the tobacco retail license will be suspended for six months for a first offence and revoked for a second offence. Moreover, if an outlet is found selling tobacco products to under-18 minors in school uniform or those below 12 years of age, its tobacco retail license will be revoked at the first offence.
It was reported that 79 tobacco retail licenses have been suspended and 11 revoked by HAS since 2015, mainly due to the age violations.
Starting from next year, the minimum legal age to buy tobacco products in Singapore will be raised to 19 and will be raised further later.