Manila, 18 August 2015: Tobacco industry interference and meddling in public health remains a big problem in ASEAN countries. This is the main finding of the recent report,Tobacco Industry Interference Index: 2015 ASEAN Report on Implementation of WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control Article 5.3, released by the Southeast Asia Tobacco Control Alliance (SEATCA). The report found that overall there is only marginal improvement in the implementation of FCTC Article 5.3 in the ASEAN region in 2013 compared to previous years (2010-2012).
Brunei Darussalam continues to deliver the best performance in ensuring its tobacco control policies are not compromised and are strictly implemented. Indonesia, on the other hand, remains at the bottom with the government allowing the tobacco industry to participate fully in the development of policies as well as accommodating its requests in delaying tobacco control measures.
Countries were ranked in the order of their implementation of protective measures, from best to poor, as follows: Brunei, Thailand, Lao PDR, Cambodia, Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia.