New research showing falling levels of youth smoking is being used as evidence that the tobacco display ban is unnecessary.

Smoking rates among 16 and 17-year-olds had declined by 7% since the legal age to buy tobacco was increased from 16 to 18 in 2007, according to a study in the journal Addiction.

The ACS said the study showed that government legislation to reduce levels of youth smoking was already working without the tobacco display ban.

"This evidence shows there are other genuinely effective ways of continuing the trend of decline in youth smoking," said CEO James Lowman. "Contrast these figures with Canada where a display ban is in place and where youth smoking is on the increase in some provinces. Retailers should not be picking up the bill for a measure that will not reduce youth smoking."