Monday, 11 October 2010

Smoke Free Europe?

In an interview to the German paper Die Welt, the EU health commissioner John Dalli has announced his intentions to intensify the campaign against smoking across the EU (via Google Translate, my emphasis):
The European Union will next year intensify the smoking laws. "Will be the target of new legislation on tobacco products, smoking, making in all EU countries less attractive and less harmful," said the European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Affairs, John Dalli, 62, WELT ONLINE. "We must strengthen our efforts in the fight against smoking. The ideal is a smoke-free Europe, "the conservative politician from Malta.

The Commissioner proposes "a significant reduction of toxic and addictive ingredients in cigarettes, like nicotine" in front. He also think about it, cigarettes make it even harder to access, they may be issued by not more visible in a store. He praised the ban on the sale of cigarettes in Britain's supermarkets in 2011 as "exemplary." The Commissioner further said: "Even changes in cigarette packaging are desirable: the more uniform and bland, the cigarette packaging, the better. The cigarette should eventually look so simple that they are not tempted to buy. "Could also appear deterrent warning pictures and detailed information on harmful ingredients on the packaging.

Dalli, who in his own country first finance and then was Minister of Social Affairs, also calls for the consistent enforcement of smoke-free environments. A "complete ban on smoking in all public spaces, transport and the workplace is necessary. Exceptions for corner bars and beer tents I do not think makes sense, because this is not just about the health of visitors, but also the employees." The economic arguments that would temporarily run as a reason for exemptions for smoking in the field were not convincing . "It can not be that the economic benefit is more important than the health of people," said Dalli.
In short the anti-smoking measures by the UK is likely to be enforced in an update of the Tobacco Products Directive, rendering any smokers' campaigns in this country redundant; effectively disenfranchising them.

The EU's public consultation on updating the Directive can be found here, and you can make your feelings known to the Commissioner here.


  1. For many years, now, I have been waiting for a general uprising in our country against the EU. Perhaps it will be the smokers who take the initiative. Smokers of the world unite....

  2. @JIC, An uprising is inevitable the longer and the more the political classes remove themselves from public opinion.

    Andrew Marr's recent comments illustrate how much the elite doesn't live in the real world, which is why most of them were so surprised by the issue of immigration at the General Election