Delon Human’s FCTC COP10 Insights – Day 2
COP10 continued yesterday with the majority of WHO member states neglecting the known benefits of Tobacco Harm Reduction (THR). As was the case on the first day of proceedings, discussions failed to acknowledge the success of sensible tobacco control, with New Zealand being one of the only delegations to underscore the importance of implementing an evidence-based approach to tobacco policies.
By continuing on this narrow-minded path, the WHO and member states fail to acknowledge the success of Sweden, putting the lives of millions of smokers around the world at risk. Sweden is on the cusp of becoming smoke free, years ahead of the EU’s 2040 target, only because it has applied THR in practice and made multiple reduced-risk alternatives available and viable for smokers to switch to.
One ray of hope in proceedings was the suggestion by some Caribbean countries to establish a working group on Tobacco Harm Reduction, to study member states where THR had been embraced in regulation. This is a positive development, aligned with Article 1(d) of the FCTC and a necessary, common sense next step for tobacco control.