The Framework Convention Alliance for Tobacco Control

Industry Interference

ILO amongst last UN Agencies accepting money from 'Big Tobacco'


On 1 November 2017, delegates of the Governing Body of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) will be asked to vote to extend their partnership with the tobacco industry. This proposal comes despite recommendations from the UN Economic and Social Committee (ECOSOC), an interagency taskforce to turn down any kind of funding from an industry with a vested interest in watering down any health and safety or labour regulation endangering its business model. If passed, ILO will run rogue in contradicting the ECOSOC resolutions and continue to maintain ties with the tobacco industry.

Letter to UN SG on Cooperation between Tobacco Industry and ILO


Download Letter to UN SG on Cooperation between Tobacco Industry and ILO


24 October 2017

Secretary General Antonio Guterres
United Nations, S-233
New York, NY 10027

Dear Secretary General Guterres,

RE: Cooperation between the tobacco industry and the International Labour Organization (ILO)

I am writing to you about a matter currently in front of the ILO Governing Body, which will meet next from 26 October to 9 November 2017 for its 331st meeting. The proposal GB.331/POL/5 concerns the ILO’s ongoing cooperation with the tobacco industry and acceptance of tobacco industry funding through its partnership with Japan Tobacco International (JTI) and the Eliminating Child Labour in Tobacco Growing Foundation (ECLT). This practice stands in direct conflict with international standards, in particular Article 5.3 of the World Health Organisation UN Framework Convention for Tobacco Control (FCTC).

Statement by the Framework Convention Alliance for Tobacco Control

The global tobacco control community remains deeply concerned by the creation of the so-called “Foundation for a Smoke-Free World”, funded exclusively by the multinational tobacco company, Philip Morris International (PMI).

In its 14 Oct. issue, The Lancet published four pieces on the Foundation, including one by its head, Derek Yach.“The articles in the most recent issue of The Lancet have, if anything, raised our level of alarm,” said Francis Thompson, Executive Director of the Framework Convention Alliance for Tobacco Control (FCA). The FCA is a global alliance of nearly 500 member organisations in more than 100 countries.

FCA notes that there is a long and tragic history of tobacco companies funding questionable research to delay effective measures to reduce deaths from smoking. Aware of their lack of credibility on health, Philip Morris and other tobacco companies also have a lengthy track record of paying third parties to advance their arguments and providing funds for what they describe as independent research efforts.