SFP thanks European Parliament
Friday, 28 February 2014
Strasbourg - Following the successful adoption of the compromise text by the European Parliament, the Smoke Free Partnership held a thank you event in the European Parliament’s seat of Strasbourg.
STRASBOURG, 28 February 2014
Following the successful adoption of the compromise text by the European Parliament, the Smoke Free Partnership held a small thank you event in the European Parliament’s seat of Strasbourg.
MEPs were invited to have their picture taken with SFP’s celebratory poster and receive a personal thank you for supporting the revision of the Tobacco Products Directive from Florence Berteletti, SFP Director, and Luk Joossens, international expert in illicit tobacco trade and Advocacy Office at the Association of European Cancer Leagues.
The Vote in the Parliament is a tremendous achievement for public health that will have repercussions throughout the world. The EU is still the biggest trading bloc in the world and what takes place here will not go unnoticed in other regions. Why?
- The Directive will apply to 28 EU countries and it is expected that the measures will be applied in other countries that currently implement the EU Directive (Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Liechtenstein), as well as other countries that would like to join the EU. Other countries worldwide are likely to be influenced.
- The warning size of 65% at the top of the package front and back is significant. Only 4 countries worldwide have implemented a larger warning size (Brunei, 75% of front and back, Canada at 75%, Uruguay at 80%, and Australia at 75% front/90% back). (Nepal and Sri Lanka have adopted larger requirements, but these are not yet implemented).
- The Directive provides that individual EU member states can go further than the labelling requirements in the Directive and therefore can individually introduce plain packaging.
- The ban on characterising flavors includes a ban on menthol cigarettes -- no country in the world has yet banned menthol cigarettes (Brazil has adopted a regulation to do so, but implementation has not yet occurred and has been delayed).
- Whilst slim cigarettes were not banned, the lipstick shape packet was. This means that slim cigarettes will need to be crammed into a standard shaped pack. It is expected that they will no longer have the same appeal, particularly on young women and girls.
The vote was an overwhelming majority: 514 votes in favor to 66 against, with 58 abstentions.