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Document 32000Y0324(03)

Council conclusions of 18 November 1999 on combating tobacco consumption

OJ C 86, 24.3.2000, p. 4–5 (ES, DA, DE, EL, EN, FR, IT, NL, PT, FI, SV)

In force


Council conclusions of 18 November 1999 on combating tobacco consumption

Official Journal C 086 , 24/03/2000 P. 0004 - 0005

Council conclusions

of 18 November 1999

on combating tobacco consumption

(2000/C 86/03)


1. EMPHASISING that Article 152 of the Treaty stipulates that a high level of health protection shall be ensured in the definition and implementation of all Community policies and activities, and that therefore health risks should be taken into account in all matters relating to tobacco, including decisions in the field of the internal market, taxation and agriculture;

2. RECALLING the Council resolution of 26 November 1996 on the reduction of smoking in the European Community(1) which reviewed the actions taken in this field and which indicated guidelines for future action;

3. RECALLING, in addition to the Directive on television without frontiers and to the Directives respectively on labelling and tar content, the adoption of Directive 98/43/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 1998 on the approximation of the laws, regulations and administrative provisions of the Member States relating to the advertising and sponsorship of tobacco products(2);

4. RECALLING Council Regulation (EEC) No 2075/92 of 30 June 1992 on the common organisation of the market in raw tobacco(3) which sets up a Community Tobacco Fund, and Commission Regulation (EEC) No 2427/93 of 1 September 1993 laying down detailed rules for the application of Council Regulation (EEC) No 2075/92 with regard to the Community Fund for tobacco research and information(4);

5. TAKING ACCOUNT of the Commission communication of 18 December 1996 on the present and proposed Community role in combating tobacco consumption;

6. TAKES NOTE of the Commission report of 8 September 1999 on progress achieved in relation to public health protection from the harmful effects of tobacco consumption;

7. WELCOMES the forthcoming transmission of the Commission proposal for strengthening and complementing the existing provisions laid down in the Directives concerning the labelling and content of tobacco products;

8. NOTES that there remain significant differences between the tobacco control policies of the Member States;

9. CONSIDERS THAT combating tobacco consumption should be one of the priorities in the policies and activities of the Community and of Member States;

10. UNDERLINES the importance of focusing efforts on actions in priority areas identified in the Commission's report, i.e. prevention of the take-up of smoking, assisting smokers who want to stop smoking, and protecting persons against involuntary exposure to tobacco smoke, and that within these action areas young people and women must be a particular priority;

11. UNDERLINES the necessity for developing an overall strategy comprising the following elements:

- an effective system to monitor tobacco consumption, tobacco policies and their effects throughout the Community as well as the implementation of Community legislation,

- a coordinated range of Community instruments and activities in all relevant policy areas,

- strengthened cooperation between Member States, and

- international cooperation, in particular with the World Health Organisation;

12. EMPHASISES in this context the importance of the planned framework Convention on Tobacco Control whose preparation was launched unanimously by the 52nd Assembly (1999) of the World Health Organisation;

13. URGES the Member States to support actively this overall strategy by their measures and to provide regular and complete information to the Commission;

14. INVITES the Commission, as a contribution to the overall strategy:

- to propose a Council recommendation aiming at protection against involuntary exposure to tobacco smoke in public places and at the working place,

- to incorporate activities to reduce tobacco consumption in the future action programme for public health taking into account the results obtained from the mid-term evaluations,

- to foster the exchange of information between Member States on best practies and experiences developed in relation to the reduction of tobacco consumption,

- to ensure that the funds available for tobacco prevention activities from the Community Tobacco Fund are used effectively in coordination with national health authorities,

- to explore the possibility of initiatives aiming at protection of minors, including rules for selling conditions, sales through electronic means (the Internet) and vending machines,

- to strengthen cooperation between health and other policy areas, such as the internal market and agriculture, with the aim of ensuring a high level of health protection in these areas,

- to examine measures in connection with tobacco taxation, which aim at ensuring its effective impact on reduction of tobacco comsuption and at preventing fraud and smuggling,

- to promote tobacco control action in the context of cooperation with applicant countries,

- to examine possibilities to include tobacco control measures in the framework of the New Transatlantic Agenda as well as in health cooperation with Canada;

15. INVITES the Commission to follow-up the development in this area and suggest new measures, when needed, and to report every two years on the work conducted and on the progress achieved.

(1) OJ C 374, 11.12.1996, p. 4.

(2) OJ L 213, 30.7.1998, p. 9.

(3) OJ L 215, 30.7.1992, p. 70. Regulation as last amended by Regulation (EC) No 660/1999 (OJ L 83, 27.3.1999, p. 10).

(4) OJ L 223, 2.9.1993, p. 3. Regulation as last amended by Regulation (EC) No 1620/95 (OJ L 154, 5.7.1995, p. 12).