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Cabinet to ratify illicit trade protocol

03 May 2018. The Union Cabinet has given its approval for ratification of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Protocol to Eliminate Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products, The Tribune reported.

The nod for ratification clears the way for India to accede to the protocol which seeks to prevent illegal trade in smoking tobacco and smokeless tobacco products.

Tobacco industry sources in the country estimate the size of the illicit market to be 20 per cent of the entire market for tobacco products in India, The Tribune said.

Part of the WHO’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the illicit trade protocol aims to push tobacco control targets within UN Sustainable Development Goals, which ask signatories to achieve a 30 per cent “relative reduction” of tobacco use among those aged 15 years and above by 2025, according to the report.

The protocol is the first UN-negotiated public health treaty and aims to eliminate smuggling, illicit manufacturing, and counterfeiting of tobacco products.