From Stockholm to COP10: Experts Allied in Their Quest for a Smoke-Free Society
2 November 2023, Stockholm, Sweden – The Smoke Free Sweden movement has set out policy recommendations for building a smoke-free society ahead of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control’s Tenth Conference of Parties (FCTC COP10) in Panama this month.
Over the past six months, Smoke Free Sweden has visited four continents and engaged with dozens of international public health experts.
Its resulting report, entitled “Learnings from Smoke-Free Sweden. A Global Consultation”, offers seven distinct and straightforward recommendations for reducing smoking rates to become smoke-free, as Sweden is on the brink of doing.
Sweden’s success in becoming smoke-free lies in its approach of making smokeless alternatives to cigarettes available, acceptable, and affordable.
Just 5.6% of Swedes smoke, only slightly above the official ‘smoke-free’ threshold of 5%, and as a result, the country benefits from the lowest rate of tobacco-related death and disease in the EU.
Commenting on the report, Smoke Free Sweden leader Dr Delon Human said: “We journeyed to Warsaw, Dhaka, Johannesburg, Stockholm, and São Paulo. From our discussions, we identified a consensus among international experts. Four foundational pillars of the Swedish experience stand out and are recommended for global adoption: embracing harm reduction strategies, ensuring accurate risk communication, providing access to reduced-risk nicotine products, and promoting consumer acceptance of smoke-free products.”
The report’s fifteen signatories, drawn from New Zealand to Colombia, hope that the World Health Organization, which has so far been resistant to embracing less harmful alternatives, will take heed of the report’s recommendations and recognise how tobacco harm reduction can play a role in improving the lives of the world’s 1 billion remaining smokers.
Complementing their efforts, the campaign has released a video that captures the global endorsement for the Swedish model, showcasing events, media interactions, and comments from policymakers.
Access the full report “Learnings from Smoke-Free Sweden. A Global Consultation.” in English here.
About Smoke Free Sweden
Smoke Free Sweden is a campaign which encourages other countries to follow the Swedish model when it comes to Tobacco Harm Reduction. Sweden is about to become the first ‘smoke-free’ European country in 2023, with a smoking rate of below 5 percent. This is a huge achievement, and will be 17 years ahead of the 2040 EU target. This can be attributed to Sweden’s open attitude towards alternative products.
For more information on Sweden’s successful approach to becoming a smoke-free nation, please visit www.smokefreesweden.org.
Smoke Free Sweden