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The 13th World Conference on Tobacco OR Health
Building capacity for a tobacco-free world
July 12-15, 2006, Washington, DC, USA
Objective: 1. Participants will review a study on likely population health impacts of inclusion or exclusion of tobacco and alcohol from the Pacific Island Countries Trade Agreement (PICTA), and 2. Be provided with recommendations to the Pacific Island Countries trade officials and ministers in relation to the trade decisions on excluding tobacco from the region-wide free trade agreement.
Methods: The Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) collaborated with Allen and Clarke New Zealand, (Regulatory Specialists) and the VicHealth Centre for Tobacco Control to review currently available information on tobacco and alcohol use in countries who are parties to PICTA, and to make policy recommendations. The PICTA entered into force two years after signing in 2001 and a decision on whether tobacco and alcohol were excluded from the agreement was required by April/May 2005. The SPC report reviewed country data and current tariff and excise policies, considered global trade policy and regulations and made recommendations for the senior decision makers in trade policy for the Pacific countries.
Results: The report recommended a continued exclusion of tobacco and alcohol products from the PICTA agreement because of likely increased consumption and health and social problems arising from lowered tariffs and prices on these products. The report was forwarded to governments within the region and a decision to delay the inclusion of tobacco and alcohol for another two years was taken by the trade officials and ministers meeting in Fiji in May 2005. Further action will be required to ensure a continuation of this policy.