Checklist Government policy/action

Checklist: Government Policy / Action

Here are some of the key preventive policies that make the government “tobacco-industry interference-resistant,” whether the tobacco industry refers to a government or partly government entity or a private one. In case of State-owned tobacco industries or monopolies, governments must first ensure that the setting and implementing of tobacco control policy are separated from overseeing or managing the tobacco industry.

 

A. NO INTERACTION POLICY

The government, or any branch, agency or body thereof is implementing a firm policy to avoid interactions with the tobacco industry and interacts with the tobacco industry only when and to the extent strictly necessary to enable them to effectively regulate the tobacco industry. Ensuring that such interactions are conducted transparently and publicly, e.g. public hearings, public notice of interactions, disclosure of records of such interactions to the public.

In addition, the pertinent government agencies have a policy to prohibit any person employed by the tobacco industry or any entity working to further its interests from:

being a member of any government body, committee or advisory group that sets or implements tobacco control or public health policy,
serving on delegations to meetings of the Conference of the Parties (COP), its subsidiary bodies or any other bodies established pursuant to COP decisions, or
being awarded any contract for the carrying out of any work related to setting and implementing public health policies with respect to tobacco control. This refers to candidates, tenderers or bidders for government projects
B. NO PARTNERSHIP POLICY

The government, branch, agency or body has clear, well-disseminated rules on prohibiting any partnerships with the tobacco industry, specifically:

Not to accept, support or endorse partnerships and non-binding agreements as well as any voluntary arrangement with the tobacco industry or any entity or person working to further its interests
Not to accept, support or endorse any voluntary code of conduct or instrument drafted by the tobacco industry that is offered as a substitute for legally enforceable tobacco control measures
Not to accept, support or endorse any offer for assistance or proposed tobacco control legislation or policy drafted by or in collaboration with the tobacco industry
Not to accept, support or endorse the tobacco industry organizing, promoting, participating in, or performing, youth, public education or any initiatives that are directly or indirectly related to tobacco control
Not to endorse, support, form partnerships with or participate in activities of the tobacco industry described as socially responsible
Not to award contracts for carrying out any work related to setting and implementing public health policies with respect to tobacco control to candidates or tenderers who have conflicts of interest with established tobacco control policies
C. NO CONTRIBUTION POLICY

The government, branch, agency or body has laws/rules and corresponding sanctions on prohibiting the acceptance of any contribution from the tobacco industry or from those working to further its interests, except for compensations due to legal settlements or mandated by law or for legally binding and enforceable agreements.

 

The national government or the pertinent government agencies have rules and corresponding sanctions to prohibit contributions from the tobacco industry or any entity working to further its interests to political parties, candidates or campaigns, or to require full disclosure of such contributions.

D. NO INCENTIVE POLICY

The government, branch, agency or body has established a policy

Not to grant incentives, privileges or benefits to the tobacco industry to establish or run their businesses
Not to provide any preferential tax exemption to the tobacco industry
To exclude the tobacco industry from any existing privileges, incentive or benefit scheme, or preferential exemptions, and to remove any such exemption or privilege granted, where legally feasible.
E. DISCLOSURE POLICY

The government, branch, agency or body has rules and regulations requiring the tobacco industry to submit information on

tobacco production and manufacture,
market share,
marketing expenditures,
revenues, and
any other activity, including lobbying, philanthropy, political contributions and any form of CSR, advertising, promotions and sponsorship

In addition, the government, branch, agency or body, if it has a mandate to regulate industries, should introduce and apply measures to ensure that all operations and activities of the tobacco industry are transparent.

requires the tobacco industry and those working to further its interests to periodically submit information about the industry and its operations
requires rules for the disclosure or registration of the tobacco industry entities, affiliated organizations and individuals acting on their behalf, including lobbyists, with said rules applying to any person employed by the tobacco industry or any entity working to further its interests who is:
  1. a member of any government body, committee or advisory group that sets or implements tobacco control or public health policy,
  2. serving on delegations to COP meetings, its subsidiary bodies or any other bodies established pursuant to COP decisions, or
  3. awarded contracts for carrying out any work related to setting and implementing public health policies with respect to tobacco control to candidates or tenderers.

imposes mandatory penalties on the tobacco industry in case of the provision of false or misleading information
ensures public access to a wide range of information on tobacco industry activities as in a public repository (e.g. website)
does not allow public disclosure by the tobacco industry or any other person acting on its behalf of activities described as socially responsible or of the expenditures made for these activities, except when legally required to report on such expenditures, such as in an annual report
prohibits the tobacco industry or any entity working to further its interests from contributing to political parties, candidates or campaigns, or requires full disclosure of such contribution