Accelerating tobacco control in Georgia

A wide group of stakeholders met in Georgia on 29 November 2013 to plan the country´s further implementation of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC). Based on results of a needs assessment conducted in June 2013, participants reviewed an article-by article analysis of Georgia´s progress so far, gaps that may exist, and actions to be taken to fill those gaps.

The meeting was organized as part of a 3-day mission by the WHO FCTC Secretariat, Dr Haik Nikogosian, to support Georgia in its efforts to strengthen implementation of the Convention. Participants at the meeting included the Deputy Minister of Labour, Health and Social Affairs (LHSA), Dr Mariam Jashi; Director General of the National Centre for Disease Control and Public Health (NCDC), Dr Amiran Gamkrelidze; Head of the WHO Country Office in Georgia, Dr Rusudan Klimiashvili as well as representatives of relevant ministries, nongovernmental and international organizations, the media and the public.

While in Georgia, Dr Nikogosian also met with the Minister of LHSA, Dr David Sergeenko, the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr David Jalaghania, United Nations Resident Coordinator/United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative, Mr Niels Scott, to highlight the importance of the Convention and agree on joint actions.

Milestones in reducing tobacco consumption

The FCTC is the first international health treaty negotiated under the auspices of WHO and was adopted in 2003. It has since become one of the most widely and rapidly embraced treaties in the history of the United Nations, with 176 Parties to date. Georgia ratified the WHO FCTC on 14 February 2006 and it entered into force for Georgia on 15 May 2006.

The needs assessment exercise conducted 3–10 June 2013 was led by the Convention Secretariat, the UNDP and the World Bank and also involved the relevant ministries and agencies in the country.