Tobacco companies still promote themselves despite TV ad ban

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INDONESIA--Cigarette advertising continues to appear on Indonesian TV despite a recent government regulation banning cigarette ads for health reasons.

Although ads featuring cigarette packs no longer appear, TV stations and ad agencies continue to air cigarette ads that display brand and company images. Despite the new regulations, the industry is finding it hard to kick the tobacco habit, which last year contributed between 10% to 15% of total revenues of the country's five private TV stations.

R.T.S. Masli, chairman of the Jakarta chapter of the Indonesian Association of Advertising Agencies, says an immediate ban would damage TVstations and agencies' revenues. In addition, he says, agencies had signed six-month to one-year contracts with cigarette producers for adplacement before the regulation was issued by the Health Ministry lastOctober.

The regulation restricts cigarette advertising to print and outdoor media only.

Copyright January 2000, Crain Communications Inc.

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