Asian Tobacco Growers Call on Governments to
Oppose Proposal by World Health Organization to
Ban Tobacco Ingredients
June 23, 2010 05:27 AM Eastern Daylight Time
JAKARTA, Indonesia--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Representatives of over 4 million tobacco growers across
Asia called on governments to reject recent recommendations by the World Health Organization (WHO) to ban
tobacco ingredients. The representatives signed a declaration at the close of the inaugural Asia Tobacco Forum,
hosted by the International Tobacco Growers’ Association (ITGA) and Aliansi Masyarakat Tembakau Indonesia
(AMTI) in Jakarta, Indonesia. The two-day meeting was attended by growers from India, Indonesia, Korea,
Malaysia, the Philippines and Thailand.
“We urge all governments to reject the proposal to ban tobacco ingredients and to investigate other alternatives that
can achieve public health goals while also protecting the millions of jobs that are dependent on tobacco growing,”
said Roger Quarles, President of ITGA.
The declaration lists 12 recommendations, including participants’ opposition to an arbitrary ban on tobacco
ingredients and a call for governments to reject the current proposal and to develop a more balanced approach to
tobacco control. Participants also urged Asian governments to work alongside other governments to do their utmost
to protect the tobacco growing sector and improve transparency and consultation within the WHO Framework
Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).
“The tobacco growing sector has been excluded from discussions and marginalized by this proposed ban. This
discrimination is not justifiable and will destroy the livelihoods of tobacco farmers and their families. Some of these
agricultural communities are already among the poorest in the country. No other crop currently exists that can
provide similar economic benefits to those communities,” said Mr. Soedaryanto, Chairman of AMTI.
Growers from these Asian countries plan to present the recommendations of the Forum to the re