ASH Daily News for 28 June 2016



  • E-cigarette industry body seeks government meeting to discuss EU vaping regulations in the wake of Brexit vote

    The Independent British Vape Trade Association (IBVTA) will seek talks with the government to discuss whether EU vaping legislation can be renegotiated in the wake of last week’s Brexit vote.

    The IBVTA said that although the European Union’s Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) was transposed into UK law on 20 May as the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016, the organisation will still “seek clarity” for its members on whether there could be any future changes to the law.

    However, Chief Executive of Action on Smoking and Health, Deborah Arnott, warned it was unlikely the government would be open to discussing regulations that are already UK law. “The government is not going to withdraw these regulations, one reason being that they include rules on standardised packaging as well as e-cigarettes and manufacturers are already making their products to these standards,” Arnott said.

    A Department of Health spokesperson said: “This is the beginning of a long and complex process. All matters will be considered in due course.”

    Source: City Am 28 June 2016

  • New research says the tobacco industry is shrinking thanks to smoking bans

    Smoking bans are not only shrinking tobacco firm’s market at home but limiting their ability to invest in markets abroad, according to new research.

    When smoking bans were introduced, it was thought that tobacco companies would instead target those countries without bans, usually those in the developing world, but joint research by academic of Warwick Business School, Aberystwyth University, and Aston Business School, has found this is not the case.

    In a study of 141 companies across 20 countries over a 10-year period, they found smoking bans in the country where the firm was based reduced the likelihood of them investing abroad. They found firms from countries without a smoking ban were 7.6% more likely to carry out Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) and they were more than 50% more likely to invest in other nations with a ban. Those firms based in countries without smoking bans, therefore, had an advantage, not only in their home market, but also abroad as they invested more heavily in FDI.

    Professor Driffield, of Warwick Business School, said: “It seems that tobacco companies are sensitive to their public profiles and, as they seek new working relationships with governments and battle over issues such as plain packaging and intellectual property, do not want to be seen to be exploiting the poorest countries, who are often the ones without smoking bans.”

    The full research published in the British Journal of Management can be accessed here.

    Source: Warwick Business School 7 June 2016

  • Medway Maritime Hospital Trust goes smokefree

    From 17th October 2016, Medway Maritime Hospital is to become completely smokefree meaning no patients, visitors or staff will be able to smoke in the buildings, hospital grounds or car parks. The Smoking Ban introduced in 2006 covered hospitals within England, but in 2012 Medway applied for permission to build smoking shelters as it could not stop people from smoking.

    Now the trust is working with Medway Council to offer support to patients, visitors and staff to help them stop smoking. This will include free nicotine replacement therapy for patients, support for staff and advice for visitors from Medway Council’s Stop Smoking Service.

    Chief executive Lesley Dwyer said: “There can be no doubt that smoking has a negative impact on health and as a healthcare provider it is important that we lead by example. That’s why I and the vast majority of our staff believe that going smoke-free is absolutely the right way forward.”

    Source: Kent Online 28 June 2016

  • India: Cigarette sales dip for fourth consecutive year

    Sales of cigarettes in India declined 8.2% in 2014-15 to 88.1 billion sticks, down from 95.9 billion the previous year, according to new data from Euromonitor. This is the fourth consecutive year that sales have fallen.

    Over the past few years, health warnings and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s continuous efforts to raise awareness of the dangers of smoking by placing adverts in various public places have contributed to the fall.

    However, according to Euromonitor, illicit trade of cigarettes has been on the rise. While in 2014, it formed 19.2% of total sales, in 2015 the share went up to 21.3%. This has meant India continues to hold the fourth spot globally in terms of illicit trade of cigarettes.

    Source: Business Standard 27 June 2016

  • Indonesia: Pictorial warnings not included in tobacco bill

    Indonesian Corruption Watch (ICW) have raised concerns over possible “foul play” in the deliberation of the controversial tobacco bill in the House of Representatives, as the bill presented contradicts existing regulations that stipulate that cigarette packs must carry pictorial warnings about the dangers of smoking.

    IWC researcher Emerson Yuntho cited Article 35 of the draft bill that does not require cigarette makers to add pictorial health warnings to their packaging. Another provision in the article stipulates that “for [clove cigarettes], cigars, tobacco leaves and shredded tobacco, a label that explains tar and nicotine content is not required”.

    The Indonesian Legal Aid Institute (YLBHI) has expressed similar concerns, saying that the bill, which became a priority in the 2016 National Legislation Program, had neglected health considerations because it aims to support a 2015 Industry Ministry decree that advocates doubling cigarette production from the 260 billion cigarettes stipulated in a previous decree, to 524.2 billion in 2020.

    The Bill will be voted on during a plenary meeting on the 28th June.

    Source: The Jakarta Post 27 June 2016