ASH Daily News for 31 March 2017



  • Next steps on the NHS Five Year Forward View
  • Pound’s dive boosts Imperial Brands’ profit
  • Students campaign for Bristol law school to be renamed over its links with tobacco slave trade
  • Junior football club first in North Lincolnshire to ban smoking on touchline
  • WHO signs illicit tobacco accord with Oceania customs
  • Pakistan: Smokefree bill not finalised by NHS ministry
  • Indonesia eyes decree on tobacco after bill runs into opposition

Next steps on the NHS Five Year Forward View

A new report reviews the progress made since the launch of the NHS Five Year Forward View in October 2014 and sets out a series of practical and realistic steps for the NHS to deliver a better, more joined-up and more responsive NHS in England.

This includes that NHS provider trusts will have to screen, deliver brief advice and refer patients who smoke and/or have high alcohol consumption in order to qualify for applicable CQUIN payments in 2017/18 and 2018/19. In 2017/18, all mental health trusts will become smoke-free, expanding to all acute trusts in 2018/19, leading to all NHS estates becoming smoke-free by 2019/20. (see p. 43)

Source: NHS England, 31st March 2017
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Pound’s dive boosts Imperial Brands’ profit

Imperial Brands said profits in the first half of the year would be 13%-14% higher because of the fall in sterling since Britain’s vote to leave the EU. The pound is down 17% against the dollar since June 2016.

Imperial Brands is regarded as a takeover target, with Japan Tobacco most often cited as a bidder. Investment bank Jefferies said it sees “an increasing probability of a take-out over the next 12 months”.

Source: Yahoo Finance, 30th March 2017
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Students campaign for Bristol law school to be renamed over its links with tobacco slave trade

Bristol’s Wills Memorial Building houses its law school and is the location for all students’ graduation ceremonies. However, petitioning students Asher Websdale, Elmi Hassan and Shakeel Taylor-Camara say little is known about the history behind the building.

In fact, the building takes its name from tobacco industry giant Henry Wills, whose fortunes are said to derive from slave-grown American tobacco. Wills financed the construction of the building.

Source: Legal Cheek, 30th March 2017
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Junior football club first in North Lincolnshire to ban smoking on touchline

Park Tigers football club in Lincolnshire has banned all smoking and the use of electronic cigarettes at its grounds. The decision to take action was agreed following a meeting of the club’s committee and team managers earlier this month.

Club chairman Dominic Smith said: “We noticed a number of spectators and team officials smoking around the pitches and instances where the players were exposed to it at close hand. We just did not feel this was acceptable. As a club, we want to offer opportunities to as many youngsters as possible to get involved with football and reap the benefits of being active and healthy. Allowing smoking to take place around football seemed to conflict with that aim.”

Source: Scunthorp Telegraph, 31st March 2017
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WHO signs illicit tobacco accord with Oceania customs

The World Health Organization has pledged to work more closely with customs in the Pacific region to clamp down on the illicit trade in tobacco.

A memorandum of understanding between the WHO and Oceania Customs Organisation (OCO) aims to encourage information exchange and best practices in “preventing and eliminating the trade” which is described as a huge problem with around 9 per cent of all cigarettes sold in the region illicit.

Organised crime networks are increasingly getting involved in tobacco smuggling and the Pacific is becoming an easy target for the activity, because island nations have sea borders that are challenging to control.

Source: Securing Industry, 30th March 2017
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Pakistan: Smokefree bill not finalised by NHS ministry

In a meeting of the National Assembly Standing Committee on National Health Services (NHS), during which the Prohibition of Smoking and Protection of Non-Smokers Health (Amendment) Bill 2017 was discussed, NHS Minister Saira Afzal Tarar highlighted on Thursday that she had repeatedly requested the speaker of the National Assembly to declare Parliament House a no smoking area, but in vain. “If people smoke in parliament, how can it be stopped in the country,” she asked.

The mover of the bill, Dr Nikhat Shakeel, said that it was a perception that Pakistan made over Rs100 billion from tobacco. “However, the fact is that the people of Pakistan pay many times more on tobacco-related health issues. Moreover, people also get cancer and other diseases, due to which they die early and spend lots of money as they learn about these diseases in the last stages,” she said.

Dr Shakeel agreed that the tobacco industry is very powerful in Pakistan, and becomes an obstacle in the passage of tabled bills regarding tobacco.

Source: News Dog, 31st March 2017
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Indonesia eyes decree on tobacco after bill runs into opposition

Indonesia’s government has proposed issuing a decree to govern the domestic tobacco industry, a move that could sharply raise cigarette output in the world’s fourth-most populous nation, after a bill outlining the changes was opposed by the health ministry and tobacco control groups.

Indonesia is the world’s fourth-biggest cigarette producer and is also a fast-growing market for major companies including Phillip Morris-controlled PT Hanjaya Mandala Sampoerna Tbk, Djarum Group and PT Gudang Garam Tbk. Nearly two-thirds of men are smokers in Indonesia, a country of 250 million people where an average packet of cigarettes costs less than $2.

Late last year, the country’s powerful parliament proposed a draft law covering production, distribution and excise taxes of tobacco, which it claimed would safeguard millions of jobs in the industry.

Source: Reuters, 30th March 2017
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