Plain packaging of tobacco products in India

The world is watching Australia progress towards tobacco plain packaging. A number of developed countries have announced that they will follow suit. But, as tobacco companies are losing traction in developed countries, it is likely they will be more and more new markets with their poison.

If the world is watching Australia move to plain packaging, imagine how people can sit and listen, if India, the second largest producer and consumer of tobacco products in the world, has developed a similar policy.

So, when the Australia-India Institute tobacco control task force held a high-level launch of its policy document on plain packaging at the Press Club in New Delhi, we all waited intently for a response from the government and department of health and family welfare.

We were more than encouraged by the response.

Support from the India representative of the World Health Organization and a number of politicians expected. But we were very happy support Shakuntala Gamlin’s in committing to move toward such a policy in India.

Steps in the right direction

Just like in Australia, Indian Tobacco Control law largely prohibits the advertising and promotion of tobacco products. But it is currently excludes packaging and point of sale displays such industry increasingly relies on the package for a promotion.

We’re sure the support of the Indian Department of Health and Family Welfare was not missed by the big tobacco companies. After all, this is a policy that would affect a fifth of the world’s population and a quarter of the world’s tobacco users.

Given the many interests and a powerful tobacco lobby, we know that the introduction of such a policy in India will be difficult. It will take several years and require significant, ongoing advocacy and research.

At the launch of the policy document, the Joint Health Minister also said that it is closely monitoring the progress of Australia, and we can only assume that the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has been encouraged by the High Court last week. We believe that India can learn from this and other Australian experience in moving to a simple package.

A Helping Hand

Australia provides technical assistance to India in the field of research and advocacy through Australia, India Institute working group, which was convened with the idea of sharing experiences and using his considerable knowledge and experience on a normal package.

This task force was called enthusiasm from the international community in the fight against tobacco, and, encouragingly, from members of the target group in India. Indeed, the severity of Indian partners has prompted us to go beyond our original mandate and conduct research on the acceptability of plain packaging and the production of promotional packaging.

We have also developed useful tools for further dissemination of our work.

Local knowledge

We released the preliminary results of the market research on the target group through the Public Health Foundation of India on the issue of admissibility of plain packaging and the relation to packaging, brands and packaging color to run.

He showed that the children’s interest in tobacco packaging significantly affects colors and branding. This shows the importance of case studies in India, before taking such initiative. We found, for example, that the Indians see the dark gray as the least attractive color, whereas in Australia, chose the color olive green.

The study also found that the context in India is complex, with multiple forms of non-smoked tobacco and smoking, as well as different forms of the latter. All these forms of tobacco should be included in any legislation, as tobacco companies will find loopholes and replace one product to another.

In India, 5500 children try tobacco for the first time every day. Attractive packaging is designed to make sure that it will not be the last time. This policy initiative, if implemented, along with other proven interventions for tobacco control, will save thousands of lives and prevent thousands of young people from becoming addicted to a substance that kills more people worldwide than any other.

We believe that our target group can help Indian organizations such as the International Union against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease and the Public Health Foundation of India to work towards plain packaging. But we need cooperation between health organizations and tobacco control, government agencies and the community, if we want to see a simple package to become a reality on the sub-continent.

BAT buys tobacco from the ULPI

British American Tobacco (BAT) said that he always bought the tobacco from the Philippines, even when he left the country in 2009.

James Lafferty, BAT Philippines Director General said that the cigarette firms buy about 2 to 3 million pounds of Philippine tobacco each year, even when she packed up and left the country three years ago. Lafferty said the Philippine Tobacco Company uses some of its products, selling cigarettes in Europe and Asia.

“It’s not massive, but we bought the Philippine tobacco, when we were not even here. BAT does not sell anything in the Philippines, but we bought tobacco here,” said Lafferty; he denied reports that the company never bought one leaf tobacco in the country. Lafferty said the company buys tobacco from a generic list Philippines, Inc (ULPI).

According to the National Tobacco Administration (NTA), ULPI bought 44,763,000 pounds of leaf tobacco in the local 2011, or 56.43% of 79.33 million kg of total production last year. “It shows our commitment to the country, we purchase each year, not even a business, because we export and use it in other countries,” says Lafferty. Cigarette Company had left the Philippines in 2009, as he claims that he could not survive under the current excise tax system cigarette brands, as introduced in the country since 1997 introduced a higher tax rate.

BAT back in February of this year, he expects that the excise tax reform proposals, priority actions Aquino administration, will soon be adopted and will provide a “level playing field” for all parties to the tobacco industry. Lafferty said the company plans to double its purchase of leaf tobacco in the Philippines, with 1.8 million kg this year to 3.6 million kg in the next year, as part of its expansion plans in preparation for the anticipated adoption of the so-called sin tax expense reform.

Lafferty said that BAT is about 5% of the total production of tobacco leaf in the Philippines every year, despite a 0.1% share of the local market of tobacco products. In general, the tobacco market in the Philippines is estimated at 100 billion pieces per year. “So we have about 5 percent of the market, a 0.1% stake. I think that it’s not bad. I buy fifty times my share of local, this is a real commitment to the Filipino farmers,” says Lafferty.

BAT hopes to sell 150 million sticks of cigarettes in the Philippines this year as it plans to expand its products in more retail stores across the country. The company has 900 brands worldwide, but this is only the beginning of Lucky strike brand in the Philippines since he returned in February. Lafferty said that Cigarette Company hopes to sell more of their products in the Philippines excise tax reform should be in place next year. BAT aims to remove Annex D, which in the current tax system classifies cigarette brands in the old and new, allowing different tax rates for brands that have been in the country until 1997, and those who entered in the local cigarette industry in 1997 year.

The company maintains the support of the Government House Bill 5727 by the author Cavite Rep. Joseph Emilio Abaya, which was approved by Congress last month. The excise tax reform bill is expected to generate P33 billion in revenues from both tobacco and alcohol, in the first year of its implementation, 85% of which goes to health care, and the remaining 15% will be used to support the tobacco manufacturers.

Cigarette giant Philip Morris Fortune Tobacco Corporation (PMFTC) accounts for more than 90% of the local market of tobacco products. The company was the second largest buyer of tobacco in 2011, the acquisition of 14,739,000 kg or 18.58% of total tobacco production in the last year.

Poor show on the auction, the high stock price hit on tobacco products

Unsold stocks with traders became a curse for the tobacco growers in Andhra Pradesh this season. Traders do not actively participate in the auctions, and even if they do, prices are low, compared to those offered last season.
The sale, which began in the northern black soils in the eastern districts of the Godavari and the Hammam, the central black soils (CBS) in Krishna and Guntur districts and the northern light soils in West Godavari, feel good, but the product of the southern light soils (SLS) and southern chernozems in Prakasam district does not receive the expected price in this season.
Although tobacco was sold at the highest price of 120 rupees per kilo before, are now traded on the RTS 98-100 kg. This is of concern to producers, who blame tobacco council. Farmers claim that the Council could intervene when prices were falling. Instead, he was not present at the auction platforms, leaving traders to decide prices.
In accordance with the Tobacco Board, only 4120000 kg of tobacco was sold at auction a variety of platforms on March 23. Out of 3620000 kg was with SLS, who came from Prakasam district. Oddly enough, the farmers of this part of the state were on the warpath with the Council over the past season prices. The strike has forced the Council to intervene and negotiate with vendors to provide the best price.
“In addition, the decline of product quality, traders has huge reserves. We have served notice of traders to give us detailed information on available stock. We will decide as soon as we receive reports from them,” said Mr. Kamalavardhana Rao, chairman of the tobacco.
Asked about the intervention, Rao said that they are offering traders to explore export opportunities. “We are asking traders to visit the different markets in different countries for the export of tobacco. There are a number of countries, looking at the import and wholesale dealers to find those markets and to move their inventory. We will have a special interaction with the traders in the near future on this,” added Rao .
He expressed the hope that the producers would receive a higher price once traders get export orders.
Nevertheless, Virginia brand of cigarettes Manufacturers Association president and former MP, Yalamanchili Sivaji said that the council helped traders more than producers. He said traders were waiting for export orders, on the one hand, and the purchase of tobacco at the lowest price beyond the auction platform to another.
“Traders do not offer the best prices on the platforms, creating panic among the manufacturers. At the same time, they buy tobacco outside the auction platform, offering low prices. Committee continues to be a spectator in this game and traders dictate the terms of the Council,” said Shivaji.
He dismissed claims of unsold shares, and said, traders are waiting for manufacturers to keep their reserves at home to get the color of these and then buy the product at lower prices. “Traders take a few methods to rob the peasants,” he added.

Zimbabwe: bring peace to the tobacco auction floors

Irritating noise, the chaos and congestion, which are characterized by tobacco marketing season for the past three years, now may be the story of the 2012 marketing season, provided a calm environment for farmers to run their business.
Visit the tobacco auction floors Agriculture Financial Gazette revealed that there were four floors of the auction with perennial problems that have been poisoned by tobacco marketing season.
Unauthorized traders, who have always contributed to the chaos and congestion associated with the auction floors were removed, there are police stations in the auction floors to solve all the cases is justified.
All four floors of operating Boca tobacco auction floor, ground floor sales of tobacco products, tobacco Millennium floors and floors of prime tobacco, built clinics that are staffed by qualified personnel, and dining rooms, which provide adequate and hot meals for the farmers.
Most farmers have expressed satisfaction with the prices offered on the floor, and a good marketing environment created by the tobacco industry and the marketing board and said that they would like prices may continue to firm as the quality of the leaves better.
However, this has not happened in the past few seasons, where instead of firming, prices weakened, as the season progresses.
A farmer from Hurungwe, Melody Mamire, said that the situation has changed radically and for the benefit of farmers.
“Over the years we have been dealing with unscrupulous dealers, thieves and prostitutes, the usurpation of our husbands, and many of us have lost money and health on the road, but this year things are different. We live in a world of marketing and fair is the predominant”
“There are traders do not affect us, and good accommodation was provided on the floor. We can plan for peacefully without incidents such as theft,” Mamire said.
Another farmer in the century, Spencer Lunga, those farmers did not expect this situation to change or get out of control.
“If someone is selling at 0800 hours to 1000 hours of testing will be ready for collection. I brought 10 bales, and sold them at an average price of U.S. $ 4.05, however, farmers have complained that contractors pay them very low prices compared with the auction prices.
“I sold the bales on the floor of the sale of tobacco products in the U.S. $ 4.90 per kg and the same sheet is made from the same barn sold for 2.00 U.S. dollars per kilogram. Last year we had to deal with unwanted traders this year, contractors are taking more than their share. It’s not fair pricing for contractors, “Juliet of the Mugadzi Inyathi Mine, wept.
“As farmers, contractors charge us in the direction of marketing, but the reason we side of the market is that contractors are not fair. They break us. Agriculture is labor intensive business, and most of us use family labor. Buyers should offer good prices “Mugadzi said.
Mugadzi, who was a farmer for six years, was forced to sell 11 bales to repay its U.S. $ 1400 loan, although it would have cost her four bales to repay the loan if it had sold its bales through the auction system.
The upper leaf quality was purchased for an average price of U.S. $ 4, 71 per kg, the average quality of a sheet of U.S. $ 4, 22 per kg, and the low quality of the sheet of U.S. $ 3.31 per kg.
Ensuring proper maintenance of washing and wells at the auction floors have shown that the tobacco auction floors are ready to deal with cholera or typhoid disease in the event of the 2012 marketing season, as the city of Harare, was unable to control the outbreak of typhoid in October last year.
Kudakwashe Nyangombe, in Kara, who brought in five bales, was extremely pleased with the prices and relaxed atmosphere of tobacco marketing Boca floors.
“I sold four bales of U.S. $ 76 per kg, 4.21 U.S. dollars per kg, US4, 75 kg, 4.71 U.S. dollars per kg and 3.29 U.S. dollars per kilogram. This is a good price, and I I hope to return soon more bales. Despite the growing season was a difficult season, because some of us have had to re-plant because of the late rain, but the market prices are fair. ”
Franicis Marabada, of the century, brought in 32 bales, which were sold at an average price of U.S. $ 4.10 per kg, and expressed satisfaction that he got his check early and was preparing to return to the centennial.
“This year we paid early, so there’s no time to blend in with the prostitutes and merchants. We buy our food in town, and all of our materials are available in a single window is the auction floors,” said Marabada.
Last season, there was chaos at the auction floors where farmers were protesting against the poor prices that have fallen to as low as U.S. $ 0, 50 kg, because buyers ran out of money. Industry had to temporarily suspend the sale of tobacco products, as farmers refuse to sell their crop at such low prices.
This year’s auction floors with total capacity of sales 36,000 bales per day. The floors have the potential to sell the entire tobacco auction in less than 50 days, provided sales producers to book in advance to cancel the congestion.

Tobacco's status in the trade transaction is disputed

Tobacco manufacturers and lawmakers from the state of Kentucky and other countries squaring off against the anti-smoking groups over whether to turn culture into a trade agreement that the U.S. is in talks with eight countries in the Pacific.
Public health groups argue that excluding tobacco from trade agreements such, helps worldwide campaign to reduce smoking. But lawmakers and farmers claim that the ban on tobacco can lead to economic losses to Kentucky and other states, and sets a bad precedent.
The Obama administration has not said that he intends to do. U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk was noncommittal when pressed on this issue, Congressman Geoff Davis of Kentucky, R-4th District, at a recent House Ways and Means Committee hearing.
“Let me be clear: we do not have (the decision) to exclude any proposal or any tobacco product,” Kirk said. “I know that there is great interest on the part of the Kentucky delegation.”
Davis and the rest of the state congressional delegation urged the administration in October to avoid the exclusion of any specific products of commercial transactions.
“Kentucky is one of the largest tobacco-producing states in the production of tobacco leaves to support thousands of jobs in the Commonwealth,” the delegation wrote to Kirk. Other delegations of Congress from tobacco states, including North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia, wrote similar letters.
More than 80 percent of Kentucky tobacco is exported, so that the exceptions to the trade agreement “threatens the business of our vendors, and may be harmful to the communities where they live and work in Kentucky,” the letter said.
Economic effect
Roger Quarles, president of Lexington-based Burley Tobacco Manufacturers’ Association, said in an interview that tobacco generates $ 350 million to $ 400 million a year to the economy of Kentucky.
“If you have any trade agreements that exist in the world that benefit agricultural production, we need to be included,” Quarles said. “We feel like the American manufacturers do not have to be at a disadvantage compared to other countries.”
In Frankfort, Kentucky House of Representatives and Senate approved a resolution supporting the inclusion of tobacco products in trade agreements.
The resolution stated that Washington should “hold fast to the long-term policies that trade agreements should be comprehensive in order to verify the absence of agricultural products or commodities, including tobacco and tobacco products can be removed for the sake of public policy.”
“All elected officials are aware of the importance of this issue,” said Sen. state of Paul Hornback, co-author of the tobacco permit.
Shelbyville Republican raised tobacco on his family farm for decades. He currently devotes 100 acres to the leaf, producing about 250,000 pounds per year.
Hornback said that he and other tobacco manufacturers consider themselves “in a big competition with the rest of the world for our products.”
Deal this year?
The 11th rounds of talks on trade agreement, known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement was held recently in Melbourne, Australia. The final agreement could come by year’s end.
Trade deal – involving the United States, Australia, Brunei, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam – will eliminate tariffs on 11 000 a range of products.
But tobacco is not to be one of them, said Matthew Myers, president of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids.
“Free trade agreements aimed at promoting products,” he said in an interview. “And this is the goal of almost every country to reduce tobacco use and reducing the number of people who die from tobacco use. These two do not go hand in hand.”
The United States has already committed to an international treaty to reduce tobacco consumption around the world, health groups and tobacco control advocates point out.
In 2004 during the reign of President George W. Bush, the United States signed the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, a treaty aimed at curbing smoking and dramatically devastating diseases associated with it. The agreement was never sent to the Senate for ratification.
The agreement was signed by 168 countries including all countries in the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations.
Smoking effects
Smoking-related diseases kill about 440,000 Americans a year. Worldwide, tobacco kills 5 million people each year – one in 10 adult deaths, according to the World Health Organization.
Myers said that the concern about excluding tobacco trade agreement negotiations masks a big problem.
“Tobacco manufacturers abusing the existing free trade agreements to challenge the law, good public health measures in countries of the world,” he said.
In any case, Myers said, tobacco farmers would not be hurt by new trade agreements, because there is nothing in it would not prevent the export of American tobacco. That ultimately lead to lower exports of tobacco gradual reduction of smoking, he said.
Quarles acknowledged that if the tobacco has been excluded from the trade treaty, “we’re not sure what will happen now or in the future.”
But “we should have the same opportunities as producers of soybeans, or any other culture you want to get in the United States,” he said.
The contract issue
The Obama administration has been wrestling for months with the tobacco problem in the trade agreement.
“As you know, there is a problem … NGO (nongovernmental organization), as well as in health, we do not table anything that would limit this control, the ability of Congress to regulate in the field of public health (region),” Kirk told the committee of Congress.
“We’re trying to find the right balance,” he said, “with our stated goal of having a high standard, comprehensive agreement that all of this on the table and how little cut outs possible, and at the same time, maintaining that the main core of the standard trade agreements that would not be discrimination, which we do not apply to product manufacturers in other countries, other than here.”
Before the beginning of the winter session of the National Governors Association late last month, Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear was one of four governors, joining New Zealand Ambassador Michael Moore as host on “The governors and ambassadors of the World Trade Acceptance” in Washington.
Kirk was the speeches at the meeting due to a possible “to establish and strengthen personal relationships critical” among government officials, industry and diplomatic representatives of countries that are major U.S. trading partners.
Sponsors of the event included Philip Morris International, which sells tobacco products in about 180 countries and in 2011 was about 16 per cent share of the cigarette market outside the U.S., according to the company’s website.
Myers said Philip Morris was trying to influence the outcome of trade negotiations on the agreement. In his statement he said that the tobacco industry “is working aggressively to this agreement will help them open up new markets for their deadly products.”
Beshear supports crop
In trading method, Beshear said Kirk on the tobacco issue.
“The governor urged the U.S. to include the export of tobacco in Kentucky Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement,” said Kerri Richardson, a representative of Beshir. “Tobacco remains an important agricultural product in Kentucky, and we will continue to work with other tobacco-exporting countries to encourage the federal government to provide access to these export markets.”
Philip Morris said in a statement that “corporate sponsorship and participation in events such as this, it is common practice for companies in the United States, including tobacco companies, and we believe that our participation was not inappropriate in any way.”
“We were one of 14 other sponsors of the event, we are proud to be supported in the past,” the company said.
 

Hawaii diverts millions in tobacco settlement funds

A report is due out later this week in the U.S. doctor who is expected to criticize the government, which diverted tobacco funds settlement to balance their budgets.
Although Hawaii is not expected to be one of the main offenders, hundreds of millions of dollars have been used for other purposes not related to smoking programs and public awareness campaigns.
“It’s very shortsighted when we start to use these funds only to balance the budget, rather than putting them in a strategic prevention programs,” said Deborah Zysman, executive director of the Coalition for a Tobacco-Free Hawaii, a nonprofit organization that receives funding tobacco settlement of their activities.
With the master settlement was signed in 1999, Hawaii received $ 536,727,359 from the tobacco industry. Of which $ 71794848 was canceled to prevent and control tobacco trust fund money to the bank’s anti-smoking programs and public service announcements. But the lion’s share of tobacco settlement, $ 464,932,511 of state legislators was diverted for other purposes.
“We understand there are other priorities and other issues, and legislators have a tough job,” said Lola Irvin, tobacco state settlement of the Project Manager. “Many other states have gone so far as to then take all the money and send them for other purposes.”
Irwin points out that most of the nearly $ 465 million in tobacco settlement funds diverted went worth causes. Legislators use most of the money to build the John A. Burns School of Medicine in Kakaako and finance day-to-day operations at the school. Other uses include funding for the program at the State Department of Health, as well as capitalizing on a rainy day fund of the state.
However, in 2011, the legislature passed a bill that would divert all of $ 6 million, which were deposited in the fund tobacco prevention. Instead, the money is used to help balance the general fund of the state in tough economic cycles. But if the money continues to be distracted, tobacco fund could run dry within four years. The Fund has a current balance of $ 45 million, but the average Hawaii spends $ 7 million to $ 8 million a year on anti-smoking programs.
“So now we’re just diving into that savings account, basically what it is,” said Zysman. “We live in turbulent times like that are unfortunate, because we know that tobacco prevention programs work.”
In addition to the diversion of funds to other purposes, the share of tobacco settlement funds, designed for smoking cessation programs continues to decline. Initially, 25 percent of monies received in Hawaii from the tobacco industry have been allocated for the Prevention and Tobacco Control Foundation Trust. In 2002, lawmakers lowered the rate to 12.5 percent. In 2007 it was lowered again to 6.5 percent. In 2015, the percentage is set to return to 12.5 percent, but nothing is guaranteed. “Its income that is looked at,” said Irwin.
To date, Hawaii anti-smoking programs have been extremely successful. From 2000 to 2009 the number of students who smoke has fallen from 12,000 to 5,500. Meanwhile, adult smokers has declined from a peak of 187,900 in 2002 to 154,000 in 2009.
Anti-smoking advocates say that the type of success can be achieved only if a significant amount of money is still available. “We need to keep the case, because the industry is not going away,” said Zysman.
Although the tobacco settlement should go to infinity, Irvine compares it to a tree with many branches. She said that the warning Tobacco Control Trust Fund and the barrel, and if it’s cut, much of the progress of the state will be lost.

Altria aims to engage wide smokers

Smokers today are more open to trying different types of tobacco smokers than in previous generations, and Altria Group Inc is working on new products to entice consumers who want to change from cigarettes, the company said.
The company, best known for its Marlboro, and stood on the profit forecast it gave in late January. Altria, whose other products include Skoal and Copenhagen smokeless tobacco, and black and mild cigars, there is a shift in the use of tobacco in the United States. While the number of smokers, both cigarettes and cigars remained relatively flat, the use of smokeless tobacco has increased. However, Marlboro – with 42 percent of the retail market in the cigarette industry – remains the dominant brand in the portfolio of Altria.
Some smokers try alternative products such as smokeless tobacco, amid concerns about the health risks of smoking.
Altria is recommended at the beginning of sales of its new brand of Marlboro Black, Vice-Chairman Dave Beran told analysts and investors at the annual Consumer Analyst Group of New York, or CAGNY, conference held in Boca Raton, Florida.
Black Marlboro, which Philip Morris, Altria unit in the United States began shipping in December, was more than 1 percent of the retail market earlier this month, said Beran, who is about to become president of Altria and chief operating officer in May.
The new product is what the company calls a bold, contemporary spin on the traditional brand, and is packaged in a black box for menthol and menthol varieties.
Marlboro brand was 42 per cent market share in 2011, compared to 42.6 percent in 2010. Marlboro is a best-selling cigarette in all U.S. states, but, like other cigarettes threatens to further reduce the number of American smokers.
Altria said that he did not see big changes in the structure of premium and discount brands.
There has been some volatility among price-sensitive buyers who are looking for suggestions and a shift between different brands of discounts, but consumers who buy premium products, as a rule, loyal, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Mike Szymanczyk told reporters at the conference.
About 90 percent of smokers, Marlboro buy only that brand, according to a study of the company.
Altria also expects adjusted earnings to grow by 6 to 9 percent in 2012, ranging from $ 2.17 to $ 2.23 per share, executives said on Wednesday.
Analysts on average had expected Altria, to earn $ 2.20 per share, according to Thomson Reuters I / B / E / S.
Over time, Altria still aims to post average annual adjusted earnings per share growth of 7 percent to 9 percent dividend and issue that is growing in line with its adjusted earnings per share growth.
Szymanczyk said last month that he intends to resign in May, and will, as Chairman and CEO Marty Barrington.
Shares of Altria rose 0.3 percent to $ 29.71 Wednesday afternoon on the New York Stock Exchange.

Indonesia Activists Push Probe of Dropped Tobacco Clause

Tobacco control activists are continuing their long campaign against the lawmakers were accused of removing a key point with the 2009 Health Bill, requiring the police to stop investigating the case will be restored.
Ki Agus Ahmad, a lawyer for the Coalition of Anti-Corruption Office of Tobacco Control points (Kakar), said the group filed a petition to the South Jakarta District Court on Monday that police tried to cancel the order to abandon the investigation.
We require that the general crime unit of the national police to reopen the investigation into why the article was removed, and refer the matter to the Office of the Attorney General for prosecution, “he told reporters outside the courthouse.
The dispute related to the revelation, soon after the adoption of the amendment of medical law in 2009 that the item classification of tobacco as an addictive substance has not been included in the final draft.
Critics have argued that this was done on the orders of a powerful lobby of tobacco in the country, and the House of Representatives acted quickly to restore the situation. Kakar, led by Hakim Sorimuda Pohan, a former lawmaker who helped draft the amended bill, then reported Ribka Tjiptaning, the chairwoman of the House’s health oversight commission, to the police for the omission.
The case against her was dismissed in October 2010, police said inaction is not a crime.
Agus said the police interpretation of the case was flawed, arguing that under the Criminal Code, Ribka and two other legislators responsible for the final draft, Aisyah Salekan and Maryani Baramuli, may be charged with falsifying documents and forging signatures.
The offenses carry maximum prison sentence of seven years.
“The fact that the omitted item was recovered does not prevent us from pursuing criminal charges against those legislators who should be held accountable for their actions,” said Agus.
Testifying at Monday’s hearing, Adj. Sr. Comr. Yusmar Latief, a representative of a unit of police crimes, said the decision to dismiss the case was
based on recommendations from well-known criminal law expert Chairul Huda, a reservation that inaction is not a crime.
He also acknowledged that among the evidence collected before the case was dismissed handwritten notes were signed by Ribka, Aisyah and Maryani, who said that “the change. Article 113, paragraph 2, which will be dropped.”
He said that while this version is limited to the bill was passed by the House, the actual project, which was sent to the Ministry of Health and the State Secretariat for signature by the president retained the dropped item.
“We have confirmed that the law is signed by the President in paragraph question, so our arguments that there was no crime committed by three legislators,” said Yusmar.

Tobacco commission awards funding

Smiles for Southside Virginian children be even brighter in the future, after the tobacco commission approved 400,000 dollars in funds offered by Halifax Regional Tuesday dental clinic in South Boston.
Virginia 15th District State Senator and Tobacco Commission Vice-Chairman Frank Ruff said the Southside Economic Development Committee approved the funds for use in equipping the clinic and the full commission gave a green light to the funding later that afternoon.
“We did not deal with it in December or in the autumn session, simply because we wanted to try to move all health-related issues that the Special Committee of the projects, as people will be the evaluation of programs,” said Ruff.
“It was the only one on the table and because of the deadlines that were required; we went ahead and approved it to full commission, in spite of this original decision.
“The request was for 400 thousand dollars, and this is something that has been approved,” Ruff, noting funds will be used to equip the clinic.
“The money was for equipment, and the commission’s request was for the majority of the 450,000 dollars cost to equip the clinic,” added Ruff.
“We are never 100 percent on these things, and we require at least 10 percent local match or other source of match.”
“Health care is an important element of work and a healthy society, and we have some excellent dentists in the region,” Ruff continued.
“Many of the general offices are terribly busy. There’s pressure compensation from Medicaid, and it will relieve the pressure on them.”
In December, staff Southside Economic Development Committee of the tobacco commission recommended that 400,000 dollars table request funds for construction of Halifax Regional Dental Clinic in South Boston.
Nevertheless, the chairman of the committee was asked to address the proposal of special projects in the event that the policy approved in direct medical projects, special programs projects.
South Boston City Council unanimously approved a resolution in March last year, authorizing the application for a grant for dental clinic.
The city applied for grant funding of up to 700,000 dollars from the Department of Housing and Community Development for a Virginia Community Development Block Grant to fund the project, which includes expanding the Halifax Primary Care Facility.
The 10,000 square-foot expansion would include 6,500 square feet to be used for shell space for future growth and 3,500 square feet for the proposed dental clinic.
The clinic will be maintained at full capacity, two dentists, two to four dental assistants and a dental hygienist

Smoke Alert

Last month, the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAE) contributed to the scientist in their ranks after his fourth attempt to enter the sacred body. Not big news, except, perhaps, the researcher in question, Xie Jianping, 52, happens to work at state-owned tobacco industry. Even in a country shrouded in cigarette smoke – last year’s nation wide ban on smoking in many public places are routinely ignored – the appointment caused a small furor.
On January 4, Global Times, a large-format Feisty, ran a story saying that the appointment of a person who is vice-president of the local Tobacco Research Institute financed by the Government of China National Tobacco Corporation monopoly (CNTC) “is another example of how well connected and influential state cigarette industry in China, “Xie research centers on adding traditional Chinese herbs to reduce the tar content of cigarettes – despite several international studies have shown that low-tar cigarettes are many harmful. He serves as editor in chief of Science and Technology Tobacco and has 23 patents and four copyrights to his name, according to the site, Zhengzhou Tobacco Research Institute, where he works.
It is not clear how this research refers to a technique, though apparently CAE honors some of the scientists who are not engineers. On its website, CAE argues that his boys are chosen for their “contribution to social progress” and that they should have an “excellent moral character.”
China churns out more cigarettes than any other country. Half of Chinese men smoke. Global Times reported that the CNTC paid about $ 75 billion in taxes in 2010, “making it one of the largest sources of revenue for state and local governments.” Of course, these gains come at significant cost. More than 1 million Chinese die of smoking-related diseases each year, according to Chinese statistics, the government is likely to undercount the dead.
He is the recipient of two second-class Chinese national scientific and technological progress awards. It is not the only scientist of tobacco, was elected to the CAE. In 1997, Zhu Zunquan, now 92-year-old researcher, who is revered as the “founder and director of science and technology of tobacco into China,” was selected to join the CAE. It is not clear whether the nonagenarian is a smoker.