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Period 2011-2020

PM Nguyen Tan Dung signed Decision 229/QD-TTg dated January 25, 2013 to approve the National Strategy for prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects through 2020.

 I. Targets and viewpoints of prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects

1. Targets

a) General targets:

To lower and control tobacco demand to gradually tobacco supplies in the Vietnamese market so as to reduce disease and death risks caused by tobacco use.

b) Specific targets:

- To reduce smoking rate among the following

a) The tobacco control should be paid attention by the leaders of ministries, sectors, agencies, organizations, localities, and is regarded as a regular and multidisciplinary task.

b) Communication, education and information on tobacco control is regarded as a leading solution and must be integrated into the programs and strategies on health promotion to enhance people's awareness on tobacco harms from that community behavior of tobacco use is expected to be changed.

c) To promote socialization on tobacco control based on mobilization of active participation of ministries, sectors, agencies, units, organizations, social organizations, non-governmental organizations and community.

d) To implement synchronously measures on reducing demands for tobacco use in conjunction with controlling gradually tobacco supply.

To boost inspection, check and punishment of violation of law on tobacco control
đ) To strengthen international cooperation and integration on tobacco control in accordance with the social- economic condition of the country.

2. Objectives:

a) General objectives:

To reduce the demand of tobacco use with an aim to gradually decrease tobacco products supply in Vietnamese market, contributing to the reduction of tobacco used diseases and deaths.  

b) Specific objectives:


- To reduce the rate of smoking in the following groups:

+ Youth (aged between 15 and 24): From 26% in 2011 down to 18% in 2020;

+ Male: From 47.4% in 2011 down to 49% in 2020;

+ Female: Down to below 1.4% in 2020.

- To enhance people’s awareness of law compliance on the formulation of a smoke free environment.

2. Viewpoints:

a) The prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects must gain the involvement of leaders of ministries, agencies, mass organizations, localities and be considered as a regular and inter-agency mission.

b) Information, education and communication on the prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effect should be the key solution and must be incorporated in programs and strategies on improving health which are designed to raise people’s awareness of the harmful effects of tobacco with an aim to change the behavior of using tobacco in the community.

c) To speed up the socialization of prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects on the basis of active involvement of ministries, agencies, units, mass organizations, social organizations, non-Governmental organizations and the community.

d) To organize the comprehensive implementation of measures to reduce tobacco use demand associated with control measures to gradually lower tobacco supplies. To accelerate inspection and handling of violations in this area.

dd) To enhance cooperation and international integration in the prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects according to the country’s socio-economic conditions.

II. Major solutions:

1. To improve policies and legal regulations on the prevention and control of tobacco’s harmful effects:

a) To develop and improve legal documents on detailed implementation of the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms:

Based on their assigned functions and tasks, competent State agencies shall review, amend, supplement and issue new legal documents on prevention and control of tobacco harms for detailed implementation of the Law on Prevention ad Control of Tobacco Harms.

To design documents and materials guiding the formulation of smoke free environment as prescribed by the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms.

To specify the levels of fines against smoking at prohibited areas, clearly identify responsibilities of competent units in inspection and evaluation of implementation of a smoke free environment.

Develop documents guiding the implementation and punishment of individuals and organizations who violate regulations or bans on people under 18 sell, buy tobacco or using semi-automatic machines to sell tobacco.

b) To design a roadmap on tax adjustment and on minimum price of tobacco in a bid to limit tobacco use demands:

The roadmap should ensure the targets of zero increase and gradual reduction in purchasing tobacco products; include proper measures to limit and control strictly sales of tobacco products in duty-free shops.

c) Control of tobacco product business

To develop a national planning scheme for tobacco business, including tobacco material areas, tobacco production, and tobacco business network.

To evaluate and make public the tobacco output of enterprises in accordance with each period of time on the basis of total permitted output of the whole tobacco industry that has been announced before the date the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms comes into effect. To regularly inspect the issuance of tobacco retail and wholesale licenses. To strictly control tobacco distribution from wholesale to retail, continue issuance of licenses to wholesale and retail agencies and pilot issuance of licenses to retailers.

To develop regulations on management of tobacco import and business; regulate main importers, quality standards and labels for imported tobacco; manage domestic circulation of imported tobacco products; stick individual import stamps to differentiate imported tobacco and domestic tobacco.

To develop, amend and supplement regulations on complete ban of advertisement, promotion and sponsoring of tobacco products under any form. To strengthen inspection of implementation of regulations on prohibiting tobacco advertisement, promotion and sponsoring.

d) To gradually alter occupation for workers in the tobacco industry

To consider and develop projects on feasibly alternative economic activities to support tobacco growers and workers.

2. Information, education and communication solution to prevention and control of tobacco harms:

To develop master program/plan on information, education and communication for tobacco harm prevention and control and organize the implementation of the program/plan to raise awareness and enhance support of policy makers and community.

To develop information, education, and communication materials on tobacco harms, benefits of smoking cessation, smoke free living environment, and policies and legislation on tobacco harm prevention and control which are suitable for each target group.

To enhance information dissemination and communication on tobacco harm prevention and control for all groups, especially policymakers, managers, youths, social staffs and communication officers.

To diversify forms and channels of information, education and communication o tobacco harm prevention and control on mass media. To promote role of network of collaborators in mobilizing the community to seriously implement regulations on tobacco harm prevention and control and actively participate in related activities. To incorporate non-smoking criteria in the campaign on developing civilized lifestyle in the community.

To develop training materials on tobacco harm prevention and control which are suitable with different education levels. To speed up education on tobacco harms as well as prevention and control work at the school.

To develop consultation services on tobacco harms and methods of smoking cessation for patients and their relatives in healthcare facilities.

3. Organization and human resources:

To consolidate the Executive Board of the National Steering Committee on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms with the participation of ministries, agencies, mass organizations and social organizations. To devise annual action plans and define clearly responsibilities of each member of the Executive Board and regularly review and evaluate task and plan performance.

To research and devise a project to strengthen the Standing Body of the Steering Committee for Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms. To establish specialized units which are responsible for tobacco harm prevention and control and health promotion at the Ministry of Health, and arrange chief staffs at ministries, ministerial-level agencies, provincial-level People’s Committees, and mass organizations in order to strengthen coordination in tobacco harm prevention and control.

To mull over the establishment of the Steering Committee for Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms in provinces and centrally-governed cities with the engagement of local departments, sectors, mass organizations and social organizations. To specify functions, missions and coordination mechanisms among them to ensure effective prevention and control of tobacco harms.

To enhance inspection and handling of violations of regulations on tobacco harm prevention and control. To develop mechanisms and plans on inter-agency and central-local coordination in inspection and handling of violations of legislation on tobacco harm prevention and control. To regularly organize inter-agency thematic and geographical inspections.

To develop network and improve the capacity of staffs in charge of tobacco control activities from central to local levels through training courses, workshops and others; to issue appropriate support policies to encourage participation of social workers and community collaborators in tobacco harm prevention and control.

To organize training to improve capacity for specialized inspectors to regularly monitor and supervise the enforcement of legal regulations o advertisement, promotion and sponsoring by organizations and individuals who carry out tobacco business. To strengthen support for anti-smuggling forces, especially in the border provinces.

To promote role of mass organizations in supervising enforcement of legal regulations on tobacco harm prevention and control and mobilize the community to give up smoking habit.

4. Financial solution:

To diversify funding for tobacco harm prevention and control from different sources: Fund established under the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms; State budget (both central and local budget); voluntary contributions of domestic and foreign organizations and individuals). To mobilize more financial and technical support from international organizations for tobacco harm prevention and control.

To develop a project on establishment of an effective and suitable fund model for tobacco harm prevention and control and submit to the Prime Minister for consideration and approval; to develop operation regulations, guidelines on income, payment, and liquidation of the Fund so that the resources will be effectively and economically used in appropriate purpose.

Funds for prevention and control of tobacco harms need to be allocated properly with a focus on information, education and communication activities, research on evidence to develop policies, monitoring and evaluation of enforcement of tobacco harm prevention and control law.

To develop support services for smoking cessation, speed up scientific studies and application of detoxification methods in line with Viet Nam’s socioeconomic conditions; to allow production, import and use of smoking cessation medicine with preferential tax policies in accordance with the State’s current regulations.

5. Other solutions:

a) International cooperation:

To cooperate with the World Health Organization and other international organizations in researching, evaluating and developing policies on prevention and control of tobacco harms in order to implement the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

To organize regional and international scientific seminars and conferences to share and learn experience of effective solutions to the prevention and control of tobacco harms. To organize study tours to share experience of tobacco harm prevention and control in countries in the region and the world.

To participate in the development of and apply the World Health Organization’s instructions on the implementation of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in compliance with Viet Nam’s conditions.

b) Environmental protection:

To accelerate measures to protect the environment and health of people who directly involved in tobacco plantation and production. To move tobacco factories away from residential areas in accordance with the State’s planning.

III. IMPLEMENTATION ORGANIZATION

1. Implementation stages:

a) Stage 1 (2012-2015): To focus o popularizing the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms; finalize legal documents guiding the implementation of the Law, banning advertisement, promotion and sponsoring of tobacco products; to implement regulations on smoke-free environment; to complete mechanism and organization to manage and use the Fund for prevention and control of tobacco harms; to evaluate the enforcement of legal documents on prevention and control of tobacco harms; to strengthen organization and network of tobacco harm prevention and control and enhance coordination capacity of the Ministry of Health in this area.

b) Stage 2 (2016-2020):

To continue enforcement of regulations on smoke-free environment; to carry out research and evaluation on the rate of tobacco use and passive exposure to tobacco smoke; to supervise and assess the implementation of regulations on prohibiting advertisement, promotion and sponsoring of tobacco products, illegal trading of tobacco products.

2. Responsibilities of relevant ministries, agencies, localities:

a) Executive Board of the National Program for Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms:

The Executive Board which was established under Decision No. 467/QD-TTg dated April 17, 2001 of the Prime Minister is responsible for directing the implementation of tobacco harm prevention and control activities across the country.

To direct formulation of national strategy and action plan on tobacco harm prevention and control for each stage, and annual work plan. To direct, organize, supervise and inspect implementation of the national strategy and action plan.

b) The Ministry of Health:

As the standing agency, the Ministry of Health is responsible for organizing and coordinating implementation of interdisciplinary programs and plans on tobacco harm prevention and control across the country. The Standing Office of the National Program for Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms, located in the Ministry of Health, is responsible for assisting the Executive Board in organizing implementation of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and relevant plans.

To take prime responsibility and coordinate with relevant agencies in reviewing and systemizing legal documents on prevention and control of tobacco harms; to develop regulations on contents, form, warning information on tobacco harms on health, ingredients and concentration of substances in tobacco products; to develop and manage national technical standards of cigarettes; to study and organize implementation of smoking cessation methods; to coordinate with the Ministry of Education and Training to compile materials for tobacco harm prevention and control and incorporate them into training curriculum of schools and medical and pharmaceutical schools.

To coordinate with the Ministry of Finance in evaluating impacts of cigarette taxes on tobacco consumption and on Government revenues.

To coordinate with such ministries, agencies like the Ministry of Information and Communications, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Viet Nam Television, Voice of Viet Nam, and mass media organizations in organizing activities to disseminate targets, significance, and contents of the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms and the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control; to call on people to actively participate in  implementation of regulations on prevention and control of tobacco harms.

The Ministry of Health sums up and reports to the Prime Minister on yearly implementation of the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms, Strategy for Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms and Framework Convention on Tobacco Control.

c) The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism:

To take prime responsibility and develop legal documents guiding the full prohibition of all kinds of advertisement on culture and art forms, drama work, and sports. To strictly control implementation of banning advertisement and promotion of tobacco products, strictly punish violations.

To be responsible for mainstream information, education and communication on tobacco harm prevention and control legislation, the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and tobacco harms on culture and art forms, drama work, and sports; to disseminate development of cultural lifestyle of not inviting or using tobacco products; to develop smoke-free tourism destinations.

d) The Ministry of Information and Communications:

To take prime responsibility for drafting legal documents guiding full prohibition of all forms of advertisement and promotion of tobacco products on press, Internet and publications.

To strictly control implementation of regulations on prohibition of advertisement of tobacco products, strictly punish violations of tobacco advertisement on press, Internet and publications.

To take prime responsibility and coordinate with the Ministry of Health in disseminating guidelines, policies and laws on tobacco harm prevention and control, the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, and harms of tobacco products on mass media.

dd) The Ministry of Industry and Trade:

To take the lead in formulating a planning scheme to build a network of wholesale and retail business of tobacco products, tobacco industry investment; to pilot the issuance of license to tobacco retailers; to coordinate with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to step by step study and develop feasibly alternative projects on economy for tobacco growers and production workers during the process of the industry rearrangement; to coordinate with relevant ministries and agencies to speed up prevention and control of illegal tobacco product business.

e) The Ministry of Education and Training:

To take the lead in researching and integrating contents of tobacco harm prevention and control into curriculum of various education levels.

To strengthen communication and education on tobacco harm prevention and control for pupils, students, officials and staff of the education and training sector; to continue directing development of smoke-free school model.

g) The Ministry of Finance:

To take prime responsibility and coordinate with the Ministry of Health in finalizing projects and documents guiding the establishment and operation of the Fund for tobacco harm prevention and control to timely support related activities across the country; to develop a roadmap for adjustment of special consumption tax against tobacco products to reduce tobacco use rate; to assess impacts of special consumption tax policy on tobacco consumption and State revenues; to check labeling of tobacco products.

To ensure financial allocation from the State budget according to annual estimated expenditure plan to ministries and agencies in accordance with the current budget decentralization for tobacco harm prevention and control.

h) The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development: To study and develop feasibly alternative projects on economy for tobacco growers and partly replace tobacco trees in order to ensure people’s life in difficult areas.

i) The Ministry of Public Security:

To enhance tobacco harm prevention and control within the sector; to coordinate with the Ministry of Industry and Trade ad relevant agencies to accelerate prevention and control of illegal tobacco business, participating in fining violations of regulations on tobacco control.

k) The Ministry of National Defense:

To enhance tobacco harm prevention and control within units under the Ministry’s management; to coordinate with competent ministries and agencies to join the fight against tobacco smuggling.

l) The Viet Nam Television, Voice of Viet Nam, and mass media:

To develop plans to disseminate widely objectives, significance, contents of the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms, the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, call on people to actively participate in actively implementing regulations on tobacco harm prevention and control.

m) Socio-political organizations

The Central Committee of the Viet Nam Fatherland Front, the Viet Nam General Confederation of Labor, the Viet Nam Farmers’ Union, the Viet Nam Women’s Union, the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union, and the Viet Nam Veterans Association mobilize members of their organizations to actively join in the campaign for tobacco harm prevention and control.

To develop and promulgate documents guiding organization of tobacco harm prevention and control; to coordinate with the Ministry of Health to compile materials on tobacco harm prevention and control which are suitable for each target group; to coordinate with authorities and mobilize people not to use tobacco products in residential areas, festivals, wedding ceremonies, funerals, and family parties.

n) Provincial People’s Committees:

To take the lead in directing and organizing implementation of the Strategy in localities; to actively mobilize resources and allocate annual budget to tobacco harm prevention and control; to report outcomes of realization of the objectives and tasks figured out in the Strategy to the Government.

IV. FUNDS FOR EMPLEMENTATION

Funds for tobacco harm prevention and control come from:

1. The Fund for tobacco harm prevention and control established under the Law on Prevention and Control of Tobacco Harms.

2. State budget (both central and local levels).

3. Voluntary contributions of local and foreign organizations and individuals.

4. Sponsoring by foreign governments and international organizations.

5. And other resources (if any)./.

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