17 July 2020

Last chance to submit your abstract for
the ENSP-ECTC: the online edition

5th European Conference on Tobacco Control
Last call for abstracts!

Although the physical ENSP-ECTC Conference, that was planned for October 2020 in Paris, is suspended, the electronic publication of abstracts will still be available by the end of 2020.
Therefore, the Call for abstracts will remain open until July 31st, 2020 via ensp-ectc.org, and all accepted submissions will be published in a special issue of the ENSP Scientific Journal - Tobacco Prevention and Cessation. We particularly welcome the submission of new abstracts on the topic of   Tobacco / Smoking / Vaping & COVID-19.     

In addition, authors will be invited to share with the ENSP Secretariat their presentation(s) in .ppt, .pdf or video format; and this collected digital content will be transformed into a resource library and made accessible for all ENSP members and partners. Hence, the Network will fully benefit from the relevance and scientific value of the 2020-proposed abstracts and the authors' work will receive its deserved recognition.  

All authors will be contacted with further details after the submission deadline. In the meantime, please forward any conference-related enquiries to secretariat@ensp-ectc.org.

Call for participants!

Since 1st of July 2020, the ENSP calls for your imagination and creativity in order to produce materials such as posters, infographics or videos to present your message and support one of the themes mentioned below:

  • Denormalisation of cigarettes and Novel tobacco products (e-cigarettes, heated tobacco products) use by youth. 
  • Smoke free campuses, smoke free schools-smoke free places for youth and the next generations.
  • Awareness of the health impact of smoking and novel tobacco use. 
  • Counteracting Tobacco Industry tactics to recruit new generation of users.
The ENSP Youth Group is happy to invite young individuals, members of youth and student associations and youth advocacy groups from the WHO European region to participate in the contest.
The purpose of this contest is to inspire young people to get in action, raise their voice against the targeted tactics of the tobacco industry, break the chainrefuse to become the next generation of smokers and novel tobacco product users in Europe and claim a tobacco free future for them and the generations to come. 

Submit your proposal electronically until 15 September 2020 to: 

News from around the world

The WHO FCTC Secretariat hosts an informal meeting with the tobacco control community

On 16 July an informal virtual meeting took place between the WHO FCTC Secretariat and Non-Governmental Organisations accredited as observers to the Conference of the Parties to the WHO FCTC, the main subject of discussion being the fundamental role that NGOs play in the fight against tobacco.

During the meeting, the Secretariat provided a series of presentations on governance matters and the Observer status for COP9 and MOP2, as both events have been postponed to 2021. The Secretariat also informed participants on the importance of a youth segment under the theme of “Tobacco-Free Generation” during COP, as well as on the progress made within the Working and Expert Groups.

The Secretariat highlighted the role of the civil society as a facilitator in reaching other sectors and NGOs in order to develop multisectoral action and connect other departments within governments with the final goal of coordinating multiple agendas. Regarding the global epidemic, WHO FCTC acknowledges the new image of the tobacco industry as a "socially responsible actor", but encourages everyone to remain vigilant and take action against these tactics.

In addition to the discussion, the Convention Secretariat expressed its desire of further promoting developments and progress of the tobacco control community.

Spanish position on tobacco consumption during Covid-19 pandemic

On July 2nd 2020, the Spanish Public Health Commission approved by consensus a position on tobacco and other related products during  COVID-19

The document points out new risks associated with the act of smoking and vaping. 

In addition to health damage, manipulation of the mask and contact of the fingers with the mouth after touching the cigarettes could act as transmitters of the COVID-19. Moreover, it highlights the expulsion of respiratory droplets that can contain viral load and be highly contagious together with the relaxation factor of the social safety distance.

The document recalls that tobacco use, in any of its forms, has been shown to worsen the course of respiratory diseases and is, therefore, an important risk factor for cardiovascular, oncological diseases, as well as diabetes, among others. pathologies.

Regarding the relationship between smoking and COVID-19 progression, "current evidence indicates that smoking is associated with its negative progression and adverse outcomes."

Along these same lines, the text reports that the WHO warns that "there is increasing evidence that the consumption of electronic cigarettes produces side effects in the lungs, heart and blood vessels, and this could increase the risk of severe complications from COVID-19 ". 

The ENSP congratulates Nofumadores for its contribution to this document by putting constant efforts into properly implementing the law, especially on the matter of hospitality business terraces restrictions.

Read the full press release (ES)...

Take action against the cooperation between Berlin Senate and PMI!

In the perpetual context of the Covid-19 pandemic, a cooperation has risen between the Berlin Senate Health Administration and Philip Morris International. As long as the Covid-19-pandemic lasts, this cooperation will obviously not stop. It is extremely important that an opposition rises against this situation and even more important: it has to come from as many sides as possible.

Such a direct cooperation between a tobacco company and represantatives of a European state capital is shameful and unparalleled. Therefore, the ENSP fully supports the initiative of Forum Rauchfrei and encourages all members to contribute to it by writing a letter of protest to the Governing Mayor of Berlin, Michael Müller, and/or the Berlin health senator Dilek Kalayci. 

Kazakhstan strenghtens the Tobacco Control law!

On 8 July, the Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev signed into law comprehensive tobacco control measures to protect Kazakhstanis against the health and economic consequences of tobacco consumption. After 2 years of hard work, the Article 110 finally passed with many strong amendments.

According to the CTFK press release, the Health Act includes several stringent tobacco control provisions:

  • mandates all products containing nicotine (including e-cigs and heated tobacco products) must be regulated as tobacco products; 
  • prohibits any point-of-sale displays; 
  • expands the list of smoke-free places (outdoor playgrounds, underground walkways, transit areas, cars with children), prohibits new products in smoke-free places, and increases fines for violators; 
  • increases pictorial warning labels from 50 to 65 percent of the display areas; 
  • raises the legal age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21; 
  • mandates content disclosure of all products containing nicotine; 
  • bans smokeless tobacco products. 

However, the Kazakhstan’s tobacco control Coalition managed to build a strong community that included the political support and attracted the social media attention. The efforts have eventually shown a positive outcome and succeeded to stand up against the tobacco industry’s interference to guarantee their citizens a healthier future.

Read more (EN)...
Read more (RU)...
Read more (RU)...

Misleading and illegal actions of
Philip Morris France

On 16 July 2020, Philip Morris France applauded the recent authorisation granted to PMI by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the US. This authorisation refers to marketing of the heated tobacco device IQOS as a "modified-risk tobacco product". By promoting IQOS as a risk-reduction tool rather than just reducing exposure, the tobacco company exceeds the communication rights initially provided by the FDA on this matter.


Therefore, two ENSP members: Alliance contre le tabac (ACT) et le Comité national contre le tabagisme (CNCT) warn against the tobacco company's offences in their press release published on 16 July. In the document, both organisations reiterate "risk reduction" claim as being, in reality, a misconception disseminated by the tobacco industry: "The offensive led by Philip Morris is worrying. By promoting IQOS as a risk reduction tool, the company seeks to soften the regulations in force on new tobacco products, and undermine the progress of health experts in the fight against smoking."

Read the full press release (FR)...

European Commission remains vulnerable to Big Tobacco 

In an article recently published, Politico considers the European Commission as a vulnerable pawn in front of the Tobacco Industry. 

The European Commission is unprepared for an impending lobbying blitz by the tobacco industry, according to a report released Thursday by watchdog Corporate Europe Observatory (CEO). According to the NGO, the industry is gearing up for a fight ahead of the review of the Tobacco Products Directive in 2021. The latest version of the legislation, which entered into force in 2016, tried to limit the impact of smoking through stricter laws on cigarette packaging and a phase-out of flavored tobacco products.

The corporate watchdog listed a raft of transparency-related shortcomings by the Commission, including 36 undisclosed meetings between EU officials and tobacco industry representatives since 2017. It also found the process of obtaining information on lobbying contacts burdensome, while the information that does end up released lacks detail.


The issue of transparency has long been fraught. The last time the directive was up for revision, then-Commissioner for Health John Dalli resigned after an OLAF investigation revealed his involvement in an attempted bribery scandal as well as other controversial industry tactics at that time.


With the Commission now trying to turn a corner, President Ursula von der Leyen has issued guidelines stating that "we need more transparency throughout the legislative process."

Read the full article...
Now also indexed in PubMed Central. Learn more...
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