Message by the Hon’ble HFM

On behalf of the Government of India, it gives me immense pleasure to welcome all the participants and delegates from across the world to the seventh Session of the conference of the parties (COP7) to to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC), being held in Greater Noida, India, from 7-12 November, 2016.

It is indeed a historic occasion for India to host this Conference, wherein member countries, who are Parties to the WHO FCTC, will discuss the progress made so far for implementation of the Convention and decide on the way forward to address specific issues related to the tobacco epidemic in a comprehensive manner.

The challenges faced by India in the realm of tobacco control are formidable, both in their number and in their complexity. However, despite the vast complexity, the situation is slowly improving on account of the substantial investments made for implementation of the WHO FCTC.

It is a landmark period for tobacco control initiatives in India. Our Government has recently implemented the large health warnings covering 85% of the principal display area of the package of tobacco products; set up the ‘Global Knowledge Hub for Smokeless Tobacco’ which will act as a repository of knowledge related to smokeless tobacco; prohibited the manufacture, sale, distribution and transportation of packaged smokeless tobacco products and launched the National Tobacco Cessation Quitline along with mCessation services. India has also pioneered the regulation for restricting display of tobacco products or their use in films and television programs.

My best wishes for the deliberations during COP7, as the outcomes of the Conference will greatly influence and galvanize the global tobacco control efforts.

I wish you a memorable stay in India and invite you to experience the rich culture, heritage and incredible natural beauty of India.

Jagat Prakash Nadda