ASH Daily news for 20 October 2015



  • Expert evidence on tobacco taxes
  • Michael Bloomberg says big tobacco preys on the world’s poor
  • Italy: A ban on smoking in cars with pregnant women to be introduced
  • China: Cartoons lure children to smoke
  • China: Wide support seen for nationwide smoking ban

    Expert evidence on tobacco taxes

    Research from the Department for Health and School of Management has contributed to a recent report by the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Smoking and Health calling on the Chancellor to increase tobacco taxes, to fund a reduction in smoking prevalence.

    Professor Anna Gilmore, Director of the Tobacco Control Research Group, and Dr Rob Branston, Deputy-Director of the Centre for Governance and Regulation, presented expert evidence on tobacco industry profitability and pricing at an Inquiry by the APPG into the cost effectiveness of tobacco control.

    A summary of the evidence presented at the Inquiry will be submitted as evidence as part of the Treasury’s Comprehensive Spending Review – APPG on Smoking and Health.

    For further information see:

    Source: Medical Express, 19th October 2015

    Michael Bloomberg says big tobacco preys on the world’s poor

    Michael Bloomberg heavily criticised the tobacco industry at a conference in London saying that tobacco companies “deliberately go out every day and try to kill, for their own profits, the poor around the world.”

    The former New York Mayor is an avowed enemy of smoking, famously introducing a smoking ban in bars and restaurants in New York in 2003. The move inspired similar bans around the world, including in Britain.

    Speaking at the City Lab London conference on Monday Bloomberg said: “The bad news is this year tobacco companies will sell more cigarettes than ever before in history because they sell them to the poor”.

    Source: Business Insider UK, 19th October 2015

    Italy: A ban on smoking in cars with pregnant women to be introduced

    The introduction of a ban on tobacco smoking in cars in the presence of children or pregnant women was approved by Italy’s cabinet last week.

    Other measures to be introduced include a ban on smoking in the vicinity of paediatric hospitals and clinics, and of gynaecology, paediatric, obstetric and neonatal wards.

    The new measures also include tougher penalties for people found selling tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or tobacco and nicotine next-generation products to minors.

    Source: Tobacco Reporter, 19th October 2015

    China: Cartoons lure children to smoke

    At 10p a go, the cigarette-grabbing game appeals to all budgets. With pictures of Mickey Mouse and English-language songs featuring Winnie-the-Pooh, the arcade-style machines outside some Beijing supermarkets also appeal to children and young women.

    “We don’t let kids play by themselves, but some parents let their kids play for them,” a shopkeeper in Maquanying, a Beijing suburb, said. “Playing” involves manoeuvring a mechanical arm to pick up a packet of cigarettes.

    Accepted as cheap, harmless fun by shoppers, the machines remind Chinese health officials and tobacco control experts of the scale of the challenge to wean the world’s top tobacco producer and consumer off an addiction that kills more than a million citizens a year.

    Source: The Times, 20th October 2015

    China: Wide support seen for nationwide smoking ban

    The call for a national smokefree law in China has received wide public support not only from non-smokers but from some smokers too, according to a report released by the World Health Organisation and other health agencies.

    The report, compiled by the WHO, the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project and the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, noted that in China, 740 million nonsmokers, including 182 million children, are exposed to secondhand smoke at least once a day.

    The report comes as China is mulling over a national ban on smoking in public places to protect nonsmokers from passive smoke.

    Support among smokers for smoke-free bars in particular is higher in China than in other countries, such as Ireland, Scotland and France, before such smoking bans were introduced there, the report said.

    Source: China Daily, 20th October 2015