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Partners in the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use met in New York to kick off the new phase of this global public health initiative, and to strategise next steps for reducing tobacco use in low- and middle-income countries with the largest populations of smokers. Increasing tobacco tax and protecting policymaking from tobacco industry interference were set as top priorities for the next six years of the Bloomberg Initiative [BI].

As people around the globe unite to mark World Cancer Day on 4 February, it is a timely moment to refresh our collective commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals. Just over a year ago members of the United Nations committed, for the first time, to reducing non-communicable diseases [NCDs] – cancer, cardiovascular disease, strokes, diabetes and chronic lung disease.

At last year’s global forum for progressing tobacco control, Daouda Adam was nominated by his peers to represent the interests and concerns of the Africa region. Preventing tobacco industry interference was the key issue he presented, on behalf of the 30 African nations that attended the seventh session of the Conference of the Parties [COP 7] for the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control [WHO FCTC].

Georgia’s Ministries of Health, Finance and Agriculture have worked together to reform tobacco tax, and have committed to reaching European Union required levels within ten years.

China’s fourth most populous city, Shenzhen, is now 100 percent smoke-free after a law banning smoking in all indoor public places came into full force on 1 January 2017.

Strategic use of economic policies proven to reduce tobacco use can save money, as well as lives, concludes a new monograph The Economics of Tobacco and Tobacco Control, published by the National Cancer Institute (USA) and World Health Organization.

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