6. DRAFT DIRECTIVE ON ADVERTISING
FROM TOBACCO PRODUCTS (6294/92)
Letter from Tessa Jowell MP, Minister
of State for Public Health, Department of Health, to Lord Tordoff,
Chairman of the Committee
Thank you for your letter of 17 December
about the tobacco advertising Directive. I am sorry that you have
not had an earlier reply.
I appreciate the depth in which the Committee
has considered this issue, particularly with regard to tobacco
sponsorship of sport. The Government has always made clear that
it is pursuing twin objectives of reducing smoking and of safeguarding
sport from the effects of the loss of tobacco sponsorship. By
working with the Presidency, other Member States and the Commission,
we have agreed a position which meets the Government's objectives:
a ban on tobacco advertising and sponsorship, the safeguarding
of sporting and arts events and an arrangement which takes into
account the special position of Formula One.
The Directive has yet to pass through the European
Parliament before final adoption and its ultimate form is not
known. Nevertheless, I hope that the Government's White Paper
on tobacco control to be published later this year will be able
to address the issues which you raise and other aspects of the
Directive which are a matter for individual Member States.
At this stage in the development of the White
Paper, and subject to the final form of the Directive, I can only
say that it will be for Ministers to decide which events will
be subject to the longer transitional period, having qualified
as "events or activities organised at world level".
We envisage this applying to: events which genuinely command significant
interest in many parts of the world, are organised and staged
in different parts of the world as part of a single competition
where each event has equal status, and where there is therefore
a significant risk that they could simply be staged elsewhere
and re-broadcast to this country. It is for the sports, which
may qualify under the terms of the Directive as applied in the
UK, to make their case to Ministers for the longer transitional
Those events which qualify for the additives
three year phase-in period will have to satisfy the Government
of their reducing dependence on tobacco sponsorship and visible
tobacco advertising at these events will have to be reduced. The
Government is to play a direct part in the efforts to reduce tobacco
sponsorship by setting up a Task Force which will help sports
currently dependent on tobacco sponsorship to find alternative
backers. It will be starting work soon.
At a European level, the implementation and
effects of Article 6(3) will be reported on every two years by
The English version of the common position text
was sent to you on 9 December along with a summary note of the
substantive changes made. I now enclose the English common position
text of 22 January 1998 following its passage through the jurist-linguist
process and subsequent adoption by the Council on 12 February.
Substantive changes over and above simple linguistic tidying have
been highlighted for the Committee and are listed below:
Article 1: a new Article (the Subsequent
Articles have been re-numbered accordingly) which states that
the objective of this Directive is to approximate the laws, regulations
and administrative provisions of the Member States relating to
the advertising and sponsorship of tobacco products. This reinforces
the Article 100a rationale behind the Directive.
Article 2 (old Article 1): remains the same.
Article 3 (old Article 2): para two: date
of entry into force has been clarified (see Article 8).
Article 4 (old Article 3): change from ".
. . appropriate and effective means" to "adequate and
Article 5 (old Article 4): remains the same.
Article 6 (old Article 5):
para two has been incorporated into para
one and a new para two has been added which states that Member
States shall communicate to the Commission the text of the main
provisions of domestic law which they adopt in the field covered
by the Directive.
voluntary restraint measures: now covers
events and activities rather than just events.
Article 7 (old Article 6): remains the same.
Article 8: a new Article which offers clarification
on the date of entry into force of the Directive.
Article 9 (old Article 7): remains the same.
20 February 1998
5 Printed in Correspondence with Ministers,
11th Report, Session 1997-98, p58. Back