Russia making great strides in Tobacco control, must do more – expert
As tough anti-smoking laws begin to be felt by tobacco users in Russia, the head secretariat of the UN Treaty on Tobacco Control convening in Moscow, Dr Vera Luiza da Costa e Silva, tells RT more must be done to denormalize tobacco consumption in Russia.
RT:As Moscow hosts the 6th session of the Conference of the parties to the UN Treaty on Tobacco Control, we are joined by the new head of the Treaty Secretariat, Dr. Vera da Costa e Silva. First of all, on the international scale, what is being done in terms of tobacco control?
Dr Vera Luiza da Costa e Silva: Almost 180 parties of the Treaty are implementing measures to protect exposure to tobacco smoke, inform populations about health damages and economic damages of tobacco, increasing taxes and prices, promoting pictorial health warnings on cigarette packages, and just addressing the issue of contraband cigarettes, working on measures for alternative livelihoods to tobacco farmers, and addressing issues of liability of the tobacco industry — all of that with a cross-cutting aspect not to allow the interference of the tobacco industry in tobacco control measures and public health.
RT:There is a framework of tax hikes. But it’s only in the form of recommendations. Is there a way for these recommendations to become obligatory?