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EUROPEAN UNION

Dalli signals snus ban to stay

06 Sep 2011. EU Health Commissioner John Dalli stated that the EU ban on snus is justified because scientific evidence indicates all smokeless tobacco products are harmful.

In a written response to a query from Member of the European Parliament Paul Nuttal, he stated that “the harmful effects of all smokeless tobacco were confirmed by the Scientific Committee on Emerging and Newly Identified Health Risks (SCENIHR) in its report of 6 February 2008. In the light of this, the Commission does not see reasons to change the legal status of snus in the EU.”

In July, the European Commission reviewed its public consultations on revising the Tobacco Products Directive in a report that showed most EU member states favoured banning all smokeless tobacco products. “Some,” states favoured maintaining the status quo, while a “very small number” of states said the snus ban should be lifted.

Among citizen respondents the “vast majority” favour lifting the snus ban, the report states.

Snus are banned in the EU, except Sweden, which negotiated an exception based on cultural considerations when it joined the EU. (pi)