November 11, 2020
This week would have been the week of the Ninth Conference of the Parties (COP9) to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) with the global tobacco control community gathering in The Hague, the Netherlands for this important occasion. This of course is no longer possible due to the global COVID-19 pandemic the world is currently facing.
Nonetheless, to mark what would have been key deliberations and discussions taking place at COP9, the Secretariat of the WHO FCTC is casting a spotlight on what is essentially a blueprint for the global tobacco control community to help tackle the tobacco epidemic: the Global Strategy to Accelerate Tobacco Control: Advancing Sustainable Development through the Implementation of the WHO FCTC 2019-2025. The Global Strategy was adopted at the Eighth Conference of the Parties to the WHO FCTC and calls upon stakeholders to intensify efforts to work together to support implementation and accelerate application of the WHO FCTC.
Specific Objective 2.1.5 of the GS 2025, highlights the need to create a communications plan for the Strategy itself and to raise the profile and visibility of the Convention.
In line with the communications plan aforementioned, the Secretariat of the WHO FCTC is launching a teaser campaign this week titled “It’s Time” to promote awareness around the Global Strategy and the importance of accelerating implementation of the Convention as a means of advancing sustainable development. This will be followed by the launch of the official campaign sometime early next year.
Beyond raising awareness about the Global Strategy, the campaign aims to target the audiences for which it is intended: Parties to the WHO FCTC, civil society partners, international governmental organizations and any others who can help to amplify the message and to trigger action among decision makers on this issue.
The Global Strategy is a focused approach that calls Parties and other stakeholders to: (1) accelerate the implementation of the WHO FCTC prioritizing the implementation of articles, 5, 6, 8, 11 and 13; (2) build alliances and partnerships with a wide range of sectors with a view to confronting tobacco-related harms and the tobacco industry and fostering policy coherence across sectors; and (3) protect the integrity of the Convention and build on the achievements of the WHO FCTC.