China is the largest producer and consumer of tobacco in the world. Consequently, the burden of tobacco-related diseases in China is enormous. Implementation of the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) may lead to a significant reduction in tobacco-related morbidity and mortality both in China and globally. In this review, the authors summarize the epidemic of tobacco use and the progress made in implementing the WHO FCTC, including the promotion of legislation for smoke-free public places; smoking-cessation assistance; labeling of tobacco packaging; enforcement of bans on tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship; increased taxes on tobacco products; increased tobacco prices; improvements in public awareness of the dangers of smoking; and identifying the barriers to implementing effective tobacco-control measures in China. Since the WHO FCTC officially took effect in China on January 9, 2006, China has taken some important steps, especially in promoting legislation for smoke-free public places. Because tobacco permeates the fabric of society, business, commerce, and politics in China, commitments and actions from the government are crucial, and implementing the WHO FCTC in China will be an arduous and long-term task.
Keywords: China; Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC); implementation; policy; tobacco control.
© 2015 American Cancer Society.