Bloomberg and Gates fund anti-tobacco fight

$4million fund established to help countries take on tobacco industry earning in billions

GN Bureau | March 19, 2015


#tobacco   #Bloomberg   #bill gates   #melinda   #cigarettes  

Smoking may cause 1 billion deaths this century while it claimed 10 million people in the last century.  In the backdrop of such ominous facts, a $4million fund to help governments fight legal battles against the tobacco industry has been announced by Bloomberg Philanthropies. The fund, to which the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is also contributing, seeks to assist countries which are making slow progress curbing smoking.  The US-based Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids will administer the fund.

There are concerns that the tobacco industry may resist new measures such as plain packaging. Australia and Uruguay are two of the countries where public health measures have been challenged by industry. The fund will give countries the technical support of legal experts to draw up legislation as well as defend court actions brought by tobacco companies. It is expected to grow as other donors join.

“We are at a critical moment in the global effort to reduce tobacco use, because the significant gains we have seen are at risk of being undermined by the tobacco industry’s use of trade agreements and litigation,” said Michael R Bloomberg. “We will stand with nations as they work to protect their populations against the deadly health effects of tobacco use.”

The tobacco industry's use of international trade agreements to threaten and prevent countries from passing tobacco control laws was unacceptable, Bloomberg said.

"This is not about trade," he said. "No one is a stronger supporter of capitalism and trade than I am. This is about sovereignty and whether a country has the right to set its own public health policies."

“Country leaders who are trying to protect their citizens from the harms of tobacco should not be deterred by threats of costly legal challenges from huge tobacco companies,” said Bill Gates. “Australia won its first case, which sends a strong message. But smaller, developing countries don’t have the same resources. That’s why we are supporting the Anti-Tobacco Trade Litigation Fund with Bloomberg Philanthropies.”

"Country leaders who are trying to protect their citizens from the harms of tobacco should not be deterred by threats of costly legal challenges from huge tobacco companies," he said.

The 16th World Conference on Tobacco or Health is currently on in Abu Dhabi.

A global report launched at the conference found there were 3.9 billion smokers aged 15 and over in WHO member states in 2010. By 2025, that number is predicted to grow to 5 billion if the present pace of tobacco control continues.

The tobacco industry has invoked trade agreements to counter anti-smoking measures – in Uruguay against graphic health warnings on packaging and in Australia against “plain” or unremarkable standardised packs.

According to the American Cancer Society and the World Lung Foundation's 2012 Tobacco Atlas, the combined profit of the world's six leading tobacco companies was $35.1 billion in 2010.

British American Tobacco, the world's second-largest cigarette maker, has said it will take action against Britain, which has a $29 billion tobacco industry.

Comments

 

Other News

Battle over cattle, Delhi govt schools lead the way and, why we must return to Gandhi & Tagore

On May 23 this year, the ministry of environment issued ‘Rules on prevention of cruelty to animals (regulation of livestock market)’ with the purported aim of regulating animal markets. When one reads the rules – notwithstanding the lame efforts from union ministers to issue clarificati

BEML unveils 9 MW capacity windmill park

  BEML, a mini ratna category-1 enterprise of the defence ministry, has set a target of using 100 percent renewable energy for its own consumption.   In this connection, BEML’s 9 MW Windmill Park installed at Bagalkot District in Karnataka was recently

BHEL registers increase in intellectual capital

  Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL), a Maharatna enterprise, has recorded nearly 14 percent growth in its intellectual capital in 2016-17 fiscal. During the year, a record 508 patents and copyrights were filed by the company, translating into filing of nearly two patents/copyrights

NALCO partners with CII, Odisha for outreach programmes on GST

  National Aluminium Company Limited (NALCO) has joined hands with the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), Odisha, to organise outreach programmes for industries and other stakeholders on GST implementation.   Series of interactive programmes are being

EPFO inks MoU with HUDCO for Housing for All by 2022

  Taking prime minister Narendra Modi’s vision of ‘Housing for all by 2022’ forward, Employees` Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has amended the EPF Scheme, 1952 to provide assistance in acquiring affordable houses to the EPF members by allowing withdrawal from PF to

IndianOil LPG import terminal to reduce refill backlog in Kerala

IndianOil is currently transporting bulk LPG from Mangalore to various LPG bottling plants in north Kerala through about 100 bullet trucks every day, which ply on narrow highways. A pipeline connecting the proposed LPG import terminal to Kochi Refineries Limited and the LPG bottling plants at Udayamperoo



Video

पाकिस्तानी सेना कैमरे में कैद करना चाहती थी ये हमला

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter