This report reviews aspects of trade agreements that challenge tobacco and alcohol control policies. Trade agreements reduce barriers, increase competition, lower prices and promote consumption. Conversely, tobacco and alcohol control measures seek to reduce access and consumption, raise prices and restrict advertising and promotion in order to reduce health and social problems. However, under current and pending international agreements, negotiated by trade experts without public health input, governments and corporations may challenge these protections as constraints on trade. Advocates must recognise the inherent conflicts between free trade and public health and work to exclude alcohol and tobacco from trade agreements. The Framework Convention on Tobacco Control has potential to protect tobacco policies and serve as a model for alcohol control.