Documents and Media Accreditation for COP7

The Convention Secretariat of the World Health Organisation Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) has released the first set of official documents for the seventh session of the Conference of the Parties (COP7) well in advance of the 60 days’ deadline. This will help prepare the Parties for the important event in India, 7 – 12 November 2016.

Remaining documents will be released as they are completed. The available documents can be accessed on this website, by clicking to the COP7 page.

UN Treaty will help countries shutdown illegal tobacco trafficking

Ambitious plans to target the illegal tobacco trade has gathered pace this week. If adopted, a new UN Protocol will help reduce health problems linked to smoking illicit cigarettes, protect vital tax revenues and hit the profits of international criminal gangs. According to European Commission Vice-President Kristalina Georgieva, the announcement that the EU is signing up to the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control`s Protocol is bound to encourage other countries to join the global action.

With formal confirmation from Brussels, it makes the European Commission the 19th Party to the Protocol. At an event marking the occasion, Dr Vera Luiza da Costa e Silva, Head of the Convention Secretariat, World Health Organisation Framework Convention on Tobacco Control said, “It’s not only a positive step the European Union is taking, but it sends a global signal that decisive action can definitely be taken if we are to reduce the harm caused by the illicit tobacco trade.”

EU, UK and India victories show that the tobacco industry is not a respectable player

The European Union (EU) Court of Justice, the United Kingdom (UK) High Court and the Indian Supreme Court have recently decided landmark cases against four of the world’s largest tobacco companies. The cases centered on tobacco control regulations, such as labelling and packaging of tobacco products—including health warnings, the prohibition of flavored cigarettes and special rules for electronic cigarettes. The three Courts confirmed that the tobacco regulations in question were lawful, especially in light of current, robust evidence regarding the harms of tobacco use and the necessity for its regulation. Pointedly, the EU Court of Justice and the UK High Court specifically used the obligations established by the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) in the rulings, underscoring its legal significance in protecting public health.

These decisions are most timely considering that the EU anti-smuggling and anti-counterfeiting deal with Philip Morris International (PMI) will expire in July 2016. These crucial decisions accentuate the fact that this tobacco agreement is deeply flawed and will not help address the current global tobacco epidemic. As such, the European Commission (EC) should not renew this deal; rather Member States should ratify the Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products—an internationally legitimate method of addressing smuggling and counterfeiting of tobacco products.

Upcoming events

29 August-2 September 2016, San José, Costa Rica – Needs assessment mission

14-16 September 2016, Brasilia, Brazil – Subregional multisectoral Protocol workshop

15-16 September 2016, Manila, Philippines – Pre-COP7 regional meeting for the Western Pacific region (non-Pacific countries), co-organized by the Convention Secretariat and WPRO.

21-22 September 2016, Malé, Maldives – Pre-COP7 regional meeting for the South East Asia region, co-organized by the Convention Secretariat and SEARO.

20-22 September 2016, Cairo, Egypt – Pre-COP7 regional meeting for the Eastern Mediterranean region, co-organized by the Convention Secretariat and EMRO.

26-28 September 2016, Nadi, Fiji – Subregional multisectoral Protocol workshop

29-30 September 2016, Nadi, Fiji – Pre-COP7 regional meeting for the Western Pacific region, (Pacific countries), co-organized by the Convention Secretariat and WPRO.

4-6 October 2016, Panama City, Panama – Pre-COP7 regional meeting for the Americas region, co-organized by the Convention Secretariat and AMRO.

7-12 November 2016, Delhi, India, at the India Expo Centre – Seventh session of the Conference of the Parties (COP7)

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