Third meeting of the expert group on impact assessment of the WHO FCTC

Speech by Dr Vera da Costa e Silva

Geneva, Switzerland
18 May 2016

Hello and welcome to the third meeting of the Expert Group on Impact Assessment.

The Expert Group first met nine months ago and work has made considerable progress since then. We have gathered information from 12 missions, as well as an extensive collection of data to support the work of the Group.

This material will now be reviewed, along with a discussion about the report of the expert group to the Conference of the Parties, including its conclusions and recommendations. In addition, the various means of publicizing the outcome of the work and sharing its findings will be considered.

The Secretariat will also contribute to the meeting. We provide a report, for consideration during the meeting, on the analysis of regional advisors’ opinions on the impact of the FCTC at regional levels, and another one on the impact of the FCTC on the behaviour of the tobacco industry. The meeting will aim to discuss the report of the expert group to COP7.

Obviously, much of this has yet to be written, but it’s possible to describe the outline of the report. It will detail key areas including:

  • Progress in FCTC implementation
  • Trends in tobacco control legislation
  • Trends in tobacco prevalence following ratification
  • The impact of the FCTC as indicated by country mission conclusions and a review of relevant literature
  • The impact of the FCTC at differing stages of tobacco control implementation
  • A discussion on mobilizing and broadening stakeholder communities, and on multisectoral action
  • The impact of the FCTC on the policy process; its role in agenda setting; how it can act as a catalyst for action; and dealing with the tobacco industry response
  • Examination of how the FCTC and guidelines impacts on various tobacco control measures

*The treaty’s effect on tobacco prevalence

Attention should be given to tobacco products, either smoking or non-smoking, when the impact of FCTC is evaluated, including smokeless tobacco and water pipes. The impact of FCTC on children and vulnerable groups, as well as gender aspects are also important to be taken into account.

Consideration will be given to regional and bilateral links, and international cooperation, as well as the role of the COP and the importance of regular reporting. Finally, there will also be a consideration of development planning, the Sustainable Development Goals, financial aid and economic issues.

The conclusions will cover challenges to implementation, required resources, technical capacity and the tobacco industry’s response.

Most importantly, the report will indicate that strong statements backing tobacco control legislation and supporting implementation are key to generating significant progress in the tobacco control agenda.

Thank you.