A new Lancet report on global health was just released, and it argues strongly for the implementation of tobacco control measures, especially increasing tobacco taxes.
Titled Global health 2035: a world converging within a generation, the report argues “The returns on investing in health are impressive. Reductions in mortality account for about 11% of recent economic growth in low-income and middle-income countries.”
In terms of tobacco control the report makes the following points:
- “National governments can curb NCDs and raise significant revenue by heavily taxing tobacco and other harmful substances.”
- When addressing WHO’s ‘best buys’ for tackling the NCDs epidemic: “… very good evidence suggests that the single most important intervention in this package is tobacco taxation”.
- “On the basis of evidence from more than 100 studies, including those undertaken in low-income and middle income countries, the single most important opportunity for national governments worldwide to curb NCDs is to tax tobacco heavily”.
- “A crucial role also exists for international collective action in global surveillance on implementing the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and regional collaboration in policy making and enforcement to prevent tobacco smuggling.”
Like all Lancet reports, this one will be quite influential, including on the discussion around the post-2015 development goals. We urge you to share it widely.