© European Union , 2016
December 2016
Thank you for a productive year in ENSP!
The ENSP Secretariat would like to thank all members and partners for contributing to a fruitful and active year in European tobacco control.

One of the biggest events this year was the entry into force of the EU Tobacco Products Directive on 20 May 2016. ENSP marked this and other important events through a number of activites realised in close collaboration with our members and partners. These include:
We are in the process of preparing a number of activities in 2017, most notably the ENSP international conference to be held in Athens 24-26 May 201 7. This will be accompanied by the celebration of the 20th Anniversary of ENSP and World No Tobacco Day, organised in collaboration with the European Respiratory Society (ERS). We look forward to seeing many of you there.

Best wishes for 2017 and happy holidays,

Cornel, Dominick and Andrea
Public Consultation on excise duties applied to manufactured tobacco
The European Commission has recently released a Public Consultation on excise duties applied to manufactured tobacco open from 17/11/2016 to 16/02/2017.

The consultation intends to gather the views of EU citizens and stakeholers on a set of possible options for the revision of
Directive 2011/64/EU, which sets out EU rules on the structure and rates of excise duty applied to manufactured tobacco.

According to the latest report from the European Commission (21 December 2015), there might be scope to improve Directive 2011/64/EU in order to reduce the administrative burden for both Member States and economic operators and to reduce distortions in the internal market. ENSP will support our members and partners to prepare answers to the Consultation upon request.

Read more about the consultation.

EU Commissioner Andriukaitis: We need a precautionary approach to e-cigarettes

EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis asserts his position on the need for further scientific evidence on the risks of electronic cigarettes.

When questioned by MEP Joëlle Mélin (ENF) on 5 October 2016 about the inclusion of electronic cigarettes in the Tobacco Directive 2014/40/EU, Commissioner Andriukaitis highlighted the lack of conclusive evidence on the long-term health effects of e-cigarettes, their use patterns and potential to facilitate smoking cessation. He said that these have deemed it necessary for Article 20 of the directive to adopt a precautionary approach to their regulation with emphasis on safety, quality and consumer protection.

Commissioner Andriukaitis concluded that the Commission report PRECISE COM(2016) 269 does not conclude that vaping is risk free. The report however points to a number of potential risks to public health relating to the use of e-cigarettes and highlights the need for further research. The European Commission does not have the intention to review the regulation of e-cigarettes within the Tobacco Products Directive, but will continue to monitor developments relating to the use of these products.

Read the Commissioner's full answer.

European Ombudsman: European Commission fails to implement Article 5.3
The European Ombudsman has on 6 December 2016 placed its decision in the case 852/2014/LP on Improving Tobacco Lobbying Transparency. The Ombudsman finds that the Commission has failed to properly implement Article 5.(3) of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and its accompanying guidelines.

The Ombudsman recommends the European Commission to undertake a thorough assessment of how to implement the WHO Convention rules across all of its departments and to implement a code of conduct on relation with the tobacco industry. See all claims by the European Ombudsman.

In October 2015 the Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, asked the Commission to publish online all meetings of all Commission staff with tobacco lobbyists. In April, Mrs O'Reilly followed up with a high-level discussion on the importance of transparency in tobacco lobbying.

Read more.
European Commission urges Members States to notify TPD Implementation
On 8 December 2016 the European Commission sent a reasoned opinion to Croatia, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden asking to notify full transposition of the Tobacco Products Directive. The Directive sets out that its provisions should had been transposed into national law by 20 May 2016.
To date, Sweden has notified the Commission of a partial transposition of the Directive, while there has been no notification of transposition from Croatia, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Slovenia or Spain. The Member States have two months to inform the Commission of the measures taken to remedy the situation otherwise, the Commission may decide to refer these cases to the Court of Justice of the EU.

Read more.
WHO Tobacco Control Playbook: Countering tobacco marketing to children
In September 2016 the WHO Regional Office for Europe launched the Tobacco Control Playbook with the aim to provide a single source of information explaining how tobacco industry players act and how governments and the public health community can respond to their arguments.
To disseminate this important work carried out by WHO Europe, the Network features each month key arguments from the Playbook of relevance to ENSP members and stakeholders in the tobacco control community. Read more about the proven effects of large pictorial pack warnings and plain packaging:
"Large pictorial pack warnings and plain packaging work "
Evidence has consistently shown that pictorial warnings on tobacco packs effectively communicate the health risks of tobacco use to wider audiences, including children and illiterate people, and that the positive effects of pictorial warnings are strengthened with larger graphic warnings and plain packaging. Implementing these measures is key in protecting people from tobacco; however, the tobacco industry has consistently fought the implementation of large, pictorial warnings and plain packaging in favour of either no warnings or, at best, vague text warnings. Key arguments for using pictorial warnings include:
  • Guidelines for implementation of Article 11 of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC), on packaging and labelling of tobacco products [26], state that pictorial health warnings on tobacco packs should be clear, visible, and legible. They should be positioned on the front and back, covering at least 50% of the display area. The Guidelines also recommend Parties to consider the adoption of plain packaging.
  • Guidelines for implementation of Article 12 of the WHO FCTC, on education, communication, training and public awareness, stress the importance of educating everyone on the harms of tobacco use, taking into account socioeconomic status, literacy, age, educational background and any other factors [27]. Pictorial warnings are essential in communicating the risks to children, people in LMICs, people who are illiterate, or anyone else who may not understand the risks from vague text warnings
  • In the Roadmap of actions to strengthen implementation of the WHO FCTC in the European Region 2015–2025 [28], the protection of children and a gender-sensitive approach are among the guiding principles. Children and females should be protected from tobacco marketing by removing all logos, descriptors or other branding elements on tobacco packaging that target them.

Read more about the arguments for pictorial health warnings on Tobacco Control Playbook.

Austrian and German tobacconists hiding health warnings

With the entry into force of the EU Tobacco Products Directive as of 20 May 2016, all EU Member States must implement the regulations on standardised packaging of tobacco products, with 65% of the package dedicated to larger graphic health warnings including photos, text and cessation information.

In various EU countries, tobacco retailers are attempting to overcome the regulation. In Germany and Austria methods include placing paper cards of non-labelled packages in front of the cigarette packages, using vending machines that only shows the bottom of the pack, which does not carry warning labels, and developing shelf systems that likewise allow for displaying only the bottom of the packs.

Professor Manfred Neuberger, Medical University of Vienna, comments that Germany is still violating the EU tobacco advertising ban. In Austria the government still lacks to enforce a smoking ban without exceptions in the hospitality industry following the date for implementation of the tobacco products directive. The same concerns an advertising ban and display ban at point of sale, ban of vending machines as well as an increase of age limit for buying any cigarettes and tobacco products to 18 years.

Professor Neuberger concludes that tobacco control in Central Europe needs enforcement of the FCTC and in particular of Article 5.3 in order to limit interference of the tobacco industry. Furthermore it is necessary to enforce comprehensive bans on advertising, promotion and sponsorship of tobacco products and e-cigarettes.

FCTC Conference of the Parties (COP7)

The FCTC Conference of the Parties (COP7) was held from 7-12 November 2016 in New Delhi, India, bringing together the WHO FCTC’s 180 Parties to discuss advances in the work on the WHO FCTC.

Among the decisions taken at the COP, was the initiative to set up
a working group to draft a “strategic framework” for the FCTC. The working group is meant to deal with various issues related to FCTC implementation.

It was further decided to follow the 30% prevalence reduction target agreed on at COP6. Parties requested the FCTC Secretariat and WHO to hold a technical consultation between COP7 and COP8 to identify necessary actions that the COP could take to ensure the achievement of the global voluntary target. Regarding the Illicit Trade Protocol it was decided to grant the Illicit Trade Protocol Panel a broader mandate. Finally it was decided to establish a Knowledge Hub for Article 5.3 and to ask the FCTC Secretariat to continue promoting measures to address tobacco industry interference among UN agencies.
Comments from the ENSP delegation

ENSP Board Member, Stephen Lequet, presented the results of the COP7 to the Swiss Association for tobacco prevention held on 1 December 2016. Mr Lequet noted that while the first six COP meeetings have been devoted to the establishment of directives ensuring the application of key FCTC provisions, COP7 differed both in its overall agenda and in the difficulty of decision-making. Discussions on agenda points were prolonged by what several delegations found to be an organised and deliberate questioning of the subjects, with the purpose of prolonging decision-making.
In spite of these difficulties the COP7 did result in a number of positive decisions. Mr Lequet highlights that since its entry into force, the FCTC has permitted indisputable progress and in some countries rates of tobacco consumption is on a considerable and sustainable decline.

Read more

Secondhand tobacco smoke and e-cigarette emissions discussed at
TackSHS Consortium meeting, November 2016

The 2nd TackSHS Consortium Meeting held on 28-29 November 2016 at the Mario Negri Institute in Milan gathered 27 researchers and professionals from six European countries for a successful two-day progress meeting, during which each team presented progress of the studies and work programme for the next three years.

TackSHS is a four-year research project funded by the European Union's Horizon2020 programme for research and innovation. The project aims at tackling secondhand tobacco smoke and e-cigarette emissions by creating assessment of exposure assessment, impact on lung diseases and economic burden in diverse European populations and developing novel interventions. Within a fast changing environment, this project will try to elucidate the comprehensive impact that SHS and e-cigarette aerosols have on the European population and how health impacts vary according to socio-economic parameters with particular emphasis on specific vulnerable groups such as patients suffering from chronic lung diseases.

Read more about the project on www.tackshs.eu

WHO-Parliament of Moldova Conference on Smokefree policies in Moldova
On December 5-6, the Parliament of Moldova hosted a policy dialogue on the implementation of the Law on Tobacco Control and the experience of countries in the European Region of the World Health Organization (WHO). The event involved representatives of Parliament, deputies, representatives of Government, academia, civil society and development partners.

The Law on Tobacco Control includes provisions on:
  • smoke-free public and work places from;
  • a total ban on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship;
  • 65% of pictorial health warnings on both sides of the cigarette pack,
  • prohibition of partnership with and support of the tobacco industry by the state.
WHO representative in Moldova, Haris Hajrulahovic praised Moldova's progress in implementing tobacco control policies and said that the policies have a positive impact not only on health, but also as contribution to the economic development of the country. "Studies made in different countries of the world on the economic impact of smoking bans in public places have shown this positive effect," he said.

Read more.
Lung testing in the European Parliament to support the
Written Declaration on Chronic Respiratory Diseases

On 23 November ENSP and organising partners held a succesful event in the European Parliament Strasbourg, inviting MEPs for free lung volume testing.

The event was part of the campaign for signing the Written Declaration on Chronic Respiratory Diseases, which calls for better prevention, access and research in chronic respiratory diseases in Europe.

Help us to get the Written Declaration signed by sharing it with your national MEPs and among your networks. Read more about the campaign and see which MEPs have already signed.

Michael Bloomberg continues his commitment to the fight against tobacco
Former New York City Mayor and philanthropist Michael R. Bloomberg announced on 5 December that he is committing an additional $360 million to the global fight against tobacco use, bringing his total commitment to nearly $1 billion.

Since its launch 10 years ago, the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco has supported the implementation of proven tobacco control laws and policies in 59 countries, reaching 3.5 billion people and saving an estimated 30 million lives.
The new commitment will expand implementation of evidence-based strategies to reduce tobacco use, with a focus on low- and middle-income countries. Particular emphasis will be on reducing the affordability of tobacco products, which is one of the most effective ways to prevent kids from starting to use tobacco and encourage tobacco users to quit.

Read more.

17th International Conference on Lung Cancer
Vienna, Austria 4-7 December 2016
The International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer held the 17th International Conference on Lung Cancer in Vienna, Austria on 4-7 December 2016. The conference included sessions on Active Prevention, Accurate Diagnosis and Advanced Care.

ENSP presented its work in European tobacco control on 3 December in
the Round Table debate on Tobacco Control in Central Europe and on 6 December in the session on Tobacco control.

Read more about the ICLC.
Slovenian Government passes the proposed new tobacco law

On 1 September the Slovenian Government accepted the proposed new tobacco law, including its provisions on plain packing, display ban and licensing.

The provision on smoking in cars ban did not pass and likewise earmarked taxes were not accepted. Instead, a new budget item was added to the upcoming national budget.
The law is due to pass to the Slovenian Parliament in about one month.

Read about the ENSP Capacity Building event held in Ljubljana, Slovenia on 19-21 October 2016.

Support ENSP's Nomination to the FCA Board
ENSP is pleased to annouce the nomination of Mr Stephen Lequet to the position as at-large representative to the FCA (Framework Convention Alliance) board. Stephen Lequet is ENSP Board member since 2015 and represented ENSP at COP7 2016. He is also responsible for strategy and advocacy and the French NGO DNF (Les Droits des Non-Fumeurs).
ENSP highly appreciates the support from our members when electing the new board. FCA members may vote for the board representatives until midnight EST 8 December. 2016.
Launch of the report The Economics of Tobacco and Tobacco Taxation in Romania in the Framework of EU Directive 2011/64 revision process

On 22 November 2016 ENSP and collaborating partners proudly hosted the event in Bucharest, Romania to launch the report The Economics of Tobacco and Tobacco Taxation in Romania in the Framework of EU Directive 2011/64 revision process.

The report was realized in an academic research partnership between Wake Forest School of Medicine and the University of Medicine and Pharmacy of Tîrgu-Mureș, under the scope of the project “Building Capacity for Tobacco Research in Romania”.

Read the full report here.

Join us in 2017 for the joint ENSP-ERS Conference:
Bridging Science and Policy for better Tobacco Control Strategies

Athens - 24, 25 and 26 May 2017

Join ENSP and ERS for the International Conference on Bridging the Gap between Science and policy for better tobacco control strategies in Athens on 24, 25 and 26 May 2017. The conference will gather ENSP members and advocates of tobacco control for three days of in-depth sessions focusing on the WHO FCTC Article 20 on Research, Surveillance and Exchange of Information, and how this translates into strong policy decisions.

We will also celebrate the World No Tobacco Day 2017 and ENSP's 20th Anniversary.

Programme and call for abstracts will follow.

© European Union , 2016
New Published Articles

A Dollars and “Sense” Exploration of Vape Shop Spending and E-cigarette Use
Clara G Sears, Joy L Hart, Kandi L Walker, Alexander S Lee, Rachel Keith, S. Lee Ridner

Tobacco Control at Community Colleges: Context and Opportunities
Scott McIntosh, Andrew F. Wall, Tye Johnson, Douglas H. Done, Jordan H. Kurtzman, Duncan Ververs, Deborah J. Ossip

Prevalence and predictors of e-cigarette trial among adolescents in Argentina
Paola Morello, Adriana Perez, Lorena Peña, Paula Lozano, James F. Thrasher, James Sargent, Raul Mejia

Tobacco packaging and labelling policies in countries of the Eastern Mediterranean and Western Pacific Regions: Post-deadline assessment of the time-bound measures of WHO FCTC Article 11
Aya Mostafa, Mina Kashiwabara

© European Union , 2016
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