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Experts: Latvia needs a reasonable regulation on smoke free products

15.09.2021.

In the seminar organized by the Smoke free Association regarding reducing the harm caused by smoking, upon participation of Latvian and foreign experts, the most recent survey organized by the social research company KANTAR was presented. Experts of the seminar were discussing on possibilities of reducing the harm caused by smoking, especially emphasizing the necessity for a reasonable and corresponding regulation directly for the less harmful nicotine containing products.

Most (69%) of users of tobacco and nicotine containing products agree that there shall be available alternative smoke-free products for adult smokers, as well as an objective information on these products, meanwhile almost a half of users or 48% of tobacco and nicotine containing products agree that encouraging of adult smokers to fully switch on alternative smokeless products may be one of the ways of reducing the harm caused to society by cigarette smoke.

During the seminar Felicetta Catanzaro, Head of Scientific programs of Philip Morris International stated that many studies reveal that the alternative smoke-free products is significantly better choice than continuing to smoke traditional cigarettes. Therefore, the regulation of such less harmful alternatives should be corresponding, as well as adult smokers shall be ensured with a full information on these products.

Swedish Match Communication director in Norway and Baltic countries Nils Erlimo stressed out that the example of Sweden and Norway show that under appropriate conditions including the availability of information and available less harmful alternatives to cigarettes, as well as reasonable public policies, cigarette smoking is significantly reducing in society. He also points out that in Latvia, unfortunately, the number of smokers is significantly high and it is important to limit cigarette smoking, not the less harmful alternatives.