Webinar Series: Leadership Summit on Tobacco Control

The 18th WCTOH will host a series of open-access webinars in the run up to the Leadership Summit on Tobacco Control, 6-7 May 2021.

The webinars will provide an accessible online platform for tobacco control leaders and experts to discuss key topics related to the theme of the Leadership Summit on Tobacco Control: Navigating Change. This theme addresses the changing political, economic and social landscape of tobacco control, and conversations will focus around the following key topics:

  • Health consequences of the use of tobacco products and tobacco cessation.
  • Regulatory science and the implementation of tobacco control measures.
  • Understanding the tobacco industry and stopping its interference in policy making.
  • Policies related to the reduction of demand for tobacco and illicit trade.
  • Social justice, the underserved and vulnerable populations.

Upcoming webinars 

Can we achieve justice in health? Lessons from population health, human rights and the FCTC process
Tuesday, 16 March 2021 from 1 – 2 pm CET

This webinar will present latest developments in tobacco control with key lessons and recommendations for advancing justice in health. Within the context of treaty frameworks that have been ratified by Parties, the speakers will highlight how to reduce health inequities by identifying opportunities for progressing tobacco control within existing frameworks for population health, sustainable development, human rights, and the WHO FCTC.

At end of this webinar, participants will be able to identify and utilise pathways and opportunities within a broader framework of existing treaties to tackle inequities in health caused by tobacco.

Register now for the webinar

FCTC Illicit Trade Protocol – Update
Tuesday, 13 April 2021
Webinar details and registration coming in 2021.

Please note: webinar registration closes 24 hours prior to the event. It is not possible to register after that deadline.

Previous webinars

Lessons in how some leading Parties are protecting health policies from tobacco industry interference

Tobacco industry has resorted to new ways of influencing policymaking and policymakers. While the industry transforms its market by introducing new products sustaining the nicotine addiction and its profits, it has also reached out to new actors and intermediaries and created new forums to engage with those who can influence policymaking.  As global concerns for health, environment, human rights and development at large grow; the global community is increasingly seeing tobacco industry committing to large investments into corporate social responsibility. Article 5.3 of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) aims to protect policymaking from the tobacco industry’s influence and offer guidance to Parties to overcome barriers and implement the mutually developed guidelines of the Convention.

Facilitated by Prof Elif Dagli, Health Institute Association Turkey, this webinar will bring together expert speakers to showcase the challenges faced and strategies devised to overcome the tobacco industry interference.

Watch a recording of the webinar

Download the presentation slides:

Tobacco Industry Response to the WHO FCTC, Stella Aguinaga Bialous

Protection of Health Policies from Tobacco Industry Interference: Lessons from India, Ranjit Singh

Tobacco Industry Activities during Pandemic, Mary Assunta

Fiscal strategies for financing health services in pandemic times

In much of the world, the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a drastic drop in government revenues coupled with an urgent need to scale up health services – not least to tackle underlying conditions that have exacerbated the pandemic. For tobacco control increases in and improvements to tobacco tax levels and structures represent a win-win: helping drive down smoking rates, while raising much needed revenue
But how much room for improvement is there – in particular during such difficult times – and how much could governments realistically expect to gain in revenue through cigarette tax reform?

This webinar will present a new summary report card, by the Tobacconomics team, on countries’ performance to date, showing not just how they are doing on average tax levels, compared to similar countries, but also whether their tax structures are simple and efficient or complicated and open to manipulation by manufacturers.

Watch a recording of the webinar

Download the presentation slides:

Weathering the COVID-19 Storm Health Taxes and Fiscal Strategies for Health Financing, Susan Sparkes

Improving the Health and Revenue Impacts of Cigarette Taxes The Tobacconomics Cigarette Tax Scorecard, Frank Chaloupka

Plain packaging: lessons for the next round of implementing countries

Plain and standardised packaging removes the potential for companies to use their packs as attractive marketing tools by only allowing the tobacco pack to be presented in one colour, shape, and size designed to be minimally attractive and to maximize the salience of the warning labels. Packs may contain no brand imagery. Post-implementation evaluation has shown that “the overall appeal of the cigarette pack among adolescents and young people decreased, quit attempts increased, health warning label impact increased, smokers were more likely to conceal their packs in public, and none of the unintended consequences the tobacco industry alleged occurred.” Official statistics from Australia found that there were “significant decreases in the prevalence of daily smokers, delays among young people picking up smoking, and a decline in the use of unbranded illicit tobacco.” (Advancing Tobacco Plain and Standardised Packaging in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Advice from Experts)

In this webinar, Ms Suzanne Zhou from the McCabe Centre for Law & Cancer in Australia will set out the legal framework for plain packaging across the world. Prof Joanna Cohen will then present the experiences and lessons from Australia and from multiple other countries. Finally, Prof Prakit Vathesatogkit will talk about Thailand’s experience of getting plain packaging legislation introduced and implemented last year. Thailand is the first South Asian country to introduce plain packaging.

Watch a recording of the webinar

Download the presentation slides:

Lessons from a decade of legal challenges to plain packaging, Suzanne Zhou

Experiences and Lessons from Countries that have Introduced Plain Packaging, Joanna Cohen

Thailand’s experience in introducing plain packaging: Lessons for other LMICs


Tobacco and COVID-19: understanding the science and policy implications

This webinar reviewed the literature on the relationship between smoking and COVID-19 available to date; examined the biological mechanisms and risk factors influencing susceptibility to infection; and discussed opportunities afforded by the pandemic to progress tobacco control and reduce tobacco related deaths.

Prof Luke Clancy, Director General of the TobaccoFree Research Institute Ireland (TFRI) Dublin, facilitated discussion between expert speakers Dr Silvano Gallus, Dr Janice Leung and Dr Catherine O. Egbe.

Watch a recording of the webinar

Download the presentation slides:

Tobacco control: threats and opportunities during COVID-19: presentation by expert speaker Catherine O Egbe, PhD

Smoking and Covid-19: A review of publications to-date: presentation by expert speaker Dr Silvano Gallus

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