Reaching Outside the Comfort Zone: Realising the FCTC’s Potential for Public Health Governance and Regulation in the European Union; Comment on “The Legal Strength of International Health Instruments – What It Brings to Global Health Governance?”

Document Type: Commentary

Author

Smoke Free Partnership, Brussels, Belgium

Abstract

In their paper, Nikogosian and Kickbusch show how the effects of the adoption by the World Health Organization (WHO) of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) and its first Protocol extend beyond tobacco control and contribute to public health governance more broadly, by revealing new processes, institutions and instruments. While there are certainly good reasons to be optimistic about the impact of these instruments in the public health sphere, the experience of the FCTC’s implementation in the context of the European Union (EU) shows that further efforts are still necessary for its full potential to be realised. Indeed, one of the main hurdles to the FCTC’s success so far has been the difficulty in developing and maintaining comprehensive multisectoral measures and involving sectors beyond the sphere of public health.

Keywords

Main Subjects


  1. WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. WHO website. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2003. http://www.who.int/fctc/text_download/en/. Accessed July 12, 2017.
  2. WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products. WHO website. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2013. http://www.who.int/fctc/protocol/en/. Accessed July 12, 2017.
  3. Nikogosian H, Kickbusch I. The Legal Strength of International Health Instruments - What It Brings to Global Health Governance? Int J Health Policy Manag. 2016;5(12):683-685. doi:10.15171/ijhpm.2016.122
  4. WHO. Which are the most effective and cost-effective interventions for tobacco control? http://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/74722/E82993.pdf.  Accessed June 10, 2017. Published 2003.
  5. The World Bank. The Economics of Tobacco Use & Tobacco Control in the Developing World. http://ec.europa.eu/health/archive/ph_determinants/life_style/tobacco/documents/world_bank_en.pdf.  Accessed June 10, 2017. Published 2003.
  6. Hopkins DP, Briss PA, Ricard CJ, et al. Reviews of evidence regarding interventions to reduce tobacco use and exposure to environmental tobacco smoke. Am J Prev Med. 2001;20(2 Suppl):16-66.
  7. Levy DT, Chaloupka F, Gitchell J. The effects of tobacco control policies on smoking rates: a tobacco control scorecard. J Public Health Manag Pract. 2004;10(4):338-353.
  8. Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Preventing tobacco use among young people: a report of the Surgeon General. https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/pdf/rr/rr4304.pdf. Accessed June 10, 2017. Published 1994.
  9. Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Reducing tobacco use: a report of the Surgeon General.  Atlanta: National Centres for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion; 2000. https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/sgr/2000/complete_report/pdfs/fullreport.pdf.
  10. Impact assessment of the WHO FCTC. WHO website. http://www.who.int/fctc/cop/cop7/FCTC_COP_7_6_EN.pdf. Accessed July 12 2017. Published 2016.
  11. Ross H. Undermining Global Best Practice in Tobacco Taxation in the ASEAN Region  -- Review of the ITIC’s ASEAN Excise Tax Reform: A Resource Manual. http://seatca.org/dmdocuments/Review_ITIC_Tax_Manual_Revised_Oct26.pdf.  Accessed  June 10, 2017. Published 2015.
  12. Doward J. Former UK Tax Chief Under Fire for Joining Smoking Lobbyists. The Guardian. May  16, 2015. https://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/may/16/uk-tax-chief-smoking-health-dave-hartnett-tobacco-hmrc. Accessed June 10, 2017
  13. Ross H. Undermining Global Best Practice in Tobacco Taxation in the ASEAN Region -- Review of the ITIC’s ASEAN Excise Tax Reform: A Resource Manual. Bangkok: Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA); 2015.
  14. Gilmore AB, Fooks G, Drope J, Bialous SA, Jackson RR. Exposing and addressing tobacco industry conduct in low-income and middle-income countries. Lancet. 2015;385(9972):1029-1043. doi:10.1016/s0140-6736(15)60312-9
  15. Tobacco taxation is one of the most cost-effective health interventions: government revenues increase while smoking rates fall. Tobacco Control Playbook website. https://tobaccoplaybook.net/en/006-taxation.html. Published September 13, 2016
  16. Castro JL. We won’t achieve sustainable development goals for NCDs or other targets without tobacco taxes. The Lancet Global Health Journal. August 30 2016. http://globalhealth.thelancet.com/2016/08/30/we-wont-achieve-sustainable-development-goals-ncds-or-other-targets-without-tobacco-taxes.  Accessed July 12, 2017
  17. IARC handbooks of cancer prevention: tobacco control. Volume 14: effectiveness of tax and price policies for tobacco control. Lyon, France: International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2011. http://www.iarc.fr/en/publications/pdfs-online/prev/handbook14/handbook14.pdf.  Accessed June 10, 2017.
  18. Chaloupka FJ, Straif K, Leon ME. Effectiveness of tax and price policies in tobacco control. Tob Control. 2011;20(3):235-238. doi:10.1136/tc.2010.039982
  19. WHO report on the Global tobacco epidemic, 2015 Raising taxes on tobacco. WHO website. http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/178574/1/9789240694606_eng.pdf.  Accessed June 10, 2017. Published 2015.
  20. Articles 26, 113 and 168 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
  21. Article 2 of Council Directive 2011/64/EU.