President Derek Yach’s Statement on the WHO’s Global Tobacco Epidemic Report - Foundation for a Smoke-Free World

President Derek Yach’s Statement on the WHO’s Global Tobacco Epidemic Report

“The WHO’s tobacco control approach is fundamentally flawed. In 20 years, they have simply failed to make any meaningful progress to reduce tobacco consumption, with over 1bn tobacco users today and 8m people dying annually from tobacco-related illnesses."

"The slowing decline in use of combustible cigarettes is a serious indictment of the organisation and their Bloomberg partners who have been focused on excessive rhetoric as opposed to action, undermining true progress. Favoured consumption reduction mechanisms, such as effective tax policies, have badly lagged in most developing nations, and there has been a massive failure to help smokers in these countries quit, with doctors rarely engaged and nicotine replacement therapies not available. This despite over $1bn being invested by Bloomberg in these countries." 

“The exceptional growth of next generation devices offers the WHO a real opportunity to tackle combustible consumption once and for all. Over 100 million ex-smokers use reduced risk products and the WHO should be taking advantage of massive investment in the sector by encouraging governments to provide an incentivised regulatory framework to enable greater expansion."

“If ever there was a time to show some pragmatism and get serious on harm reduction strategies, as health systems play catch up from the pandemic, it is now.”

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