An anti-tobacco lobby group has criticised the delay with implementing plain packaging legislation for cigarettes on World No Tobacco Day.
Plain packaging was expected to be introduced on May 20 - but delays in developing the Bill mean it will not come into effect until 2017.
It comes as the World Health Organisation warns that tobacco kills nearly six million people every year and more than 600,000 deaths are the result of second-hand smoke.
Dr Patrick Doorley, chairman of ASH Ireland, is urging the Government to prioritise the roll-out of this legislation.
"We're asking them to make this a top priority, as it’s a major public health issue," he said.
"And Ireland has shown great leadership in terms of tobacco control and this is another area where we had shown strong leadership, so we'd urge them to put this at the top of the priority list."