Tobacco industry lobbies Bangladesh Government Agency to champion its business during COVID-19 pandemic

ABM Zubair Bangladesh has seen an unprecedented level of tobacco industry interference during the COVID-19 crisis. The tobacco industry in Bangladesh, dominated by two transnational tobacco companies, British American Tobacco Bangladesh (BATB) and Japan Tobacco International (JTI), has exploited the ongoing pandemic to protect its cigarette business. While publicly building their image by making donations […]

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Tobacco Control and Human Rights Before, During, and After COVID-19

Neil Sircar and Stella Aguinaga Bialous The global COVID-19 pandemic has brought about significant disruption and trauma, and with it a rise in threats to human rights. UN Secretary-General Guterres remarked on April 23rd, 2020 that the pandemic was “fast becoming a human rights crisis” as nations grapple with detecting, preventing, and responding to overlapping […]

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Article 5.3 of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control & the COVID19 Pandemic

Stella Aguinaga Bialous & Becky Freeman Article 5.3 implementation guidelines of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) remind all parties to protect public health against the “commercial or other vested interests” of the tobacco industry.  The guidelines recognize a “fundamental and irreconcilable” conflict of interest between tobacco industry ambitions and public health policy […]

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Foundation for a Smoke Free World is not complementary to public health efforts – it’s undermining them

Heather Lusardi, Anna Gilmore, Ulysses Dorotheo The Foundation for a Smoke-Free World (FSFW), established with almost US $1 billion from Philip Morris International, is essentially operating as a front group for Philip Morris International’s (PMI) interests. Unsurprisingly, therefore, overtures to the public health community have been repeatedly, firmly and publicly rejected: WHO has made clear […]

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The Philippines: Pioneering the Tobacco Endgame

  Kathleen de Leon and Jacky T Sarita In global tobacco control, the Philippines is known as a particularly challenging environment due to long-standing tobacco industry influence. Over 15 years ago,  it was termed the “strongest tobacco lobby in Asia”. The 2019 Southeast Asia Tobacco Industry Interference Index ranked the Philippines fifth among nine nations […]

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Pakistan: time for stronger enforcement on tobacco control

Musaddique Hussain, Abdul Majeed, Imran Imran, Muhammad Fawad Rasool, Ikhlaq Hussain, Qasim Barkat, Ximei Wu Tobacco use continues to grow in Pakistan due to lack of awareness about its dangers, low prices, aggressive tobacco industry marketing efforts and steady population growth. According to Dr. Abid Saeed Nima, WHO’s acting chief in Pakistan, new estimates show […]

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World: International Labour Organization (ILO) ends tobacco industry funding

Alice Grainger Gasser, corresponding author. Contributing authors: Leonce Dieudonné Sessou, Fastone Goma, Lutgard Kokulinda Kagaruki, Marty Otanez, Hellen Neima At the end of October, the Governing Body of the International Labour Organization (ILO) endorsed its new integrated strategy for the tobacco sector. The decision ends ILO’s involvement in over a decade of tobacco industry corporate […]

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World: Gandhi’s legacy and a Tobacco-Free World

From Indian public health researchers Amit Yadav and Prashant Kumar Singh, a call to action for world leaders to take action at the UN General Assembly on the eve of Gandhi’s 150th birthday.  “A correspondent who is interested in a variety of reforms asks what the nation pays for her tobacco bill.  I find that […]

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The 2020 Tokyo Olympic & Paralympic Games: time for Japan to showcase smokefree hospitality

Authors: Shuhei Nomura and Haruka Sakamoto with Yusuke Tsugawa, Naoko Iwanaga, Seiichiro Kuchiki, Ichiro Kawachi, Kenji Shibuya Despite its outstanding health record in other areas, Japan is a global laggard in tobacco control, and does not meet standards set by the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), particularly for smoke-free public spaces. The […]

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How should governments deal with multinational consulting firms that work for the tobacco industry?

  George Thomson, Louise Delany Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington, New Zealand george.thomson@otago.ac.nz The New Zealand Ministry of Health is currently using a consulting firm EY (formerly Ernst & Young) to research the impacts of tobacco taxation, despite EY’s work locally and internationally for tobacco companies. This decision may breach the Framework […]

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