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World No Tobacco Day - May 31, 2010: Women are huge potential market for the tobacco industry


28 May 2010


Health & Consumers

Press release issued by the WHO Regional Office for Europe

Copenhagen, 28 May 2010

Tobacco advertising targeting women has gained prominence around the world, recruiting increasing numbers of women and girls as tobacco consumers, the WHO Regional Office for Europe warns, ahead of World No Tobacco Day (31 May 2010).

The theme for World No Tobacco Day 2010 is gender and tobacco, with an emphasis on marketing to women. WHO will use the occasion to draw attention to the gender dimension of tobacco advertising, and to reiterate its call to governments to ban all forms of tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship.

Women comprise 200 million of the world’s more than 1 billion smokers. In the 53 countries belonging to the WHO European Region, 21% of all women smoke.

This figure is bound to rise as tobacco advertising – associating smoking with female beauty, luxury, empowerment and health – increasingly targets younger generations of women. In the European Region, 59% of men smoke, and the tobacco industry sees new market opportunities in narrowing the gender gap.

Click on the link to read the entire document.


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