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New Zealand still needs to protect ourselves from the tobacco industry

For the second year running, the Cancer Society was pleased to complete the NZ/Aotearoa Tobacco Industry Interference Report.

NZ/Aotearoa Tobacco Industry Interference Report highlights the many tactics tobacco companies and their affiliates employ to kill, weaken, or delay essential policies to reduce tobacco use in New Zealand.

This report on NZ tobacco industry interference informed the Global Tobacco Index 2021, which highlights how the tobacco industry interferes in public policy in 80 countries worldwide.

While New Zealand is doing better than a lot of countries, there are still measures we need to put in place to protect ourselves from the interference of tobacco companies, as we strive to reach the goal of Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 and meet our obligations under the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC).


Some points of note in the NZ/Aotearoa Tobacco Industry Interference Report


  • NZ allowed a tobacco company to operate as a "business essential to the
    necessities of life" during the Level 4 Covid-19 lockdown, while most businesses and manufacturers were required to close.
  • There is no specific policy to prevent contributions from the tobacco industry to political parties, candidates or campaigns, and lobbyists who seek to derail public health policies are not regulated.
  • So-called tobacco industry 'Corporate Social Responsibility' activities are not banned in Aotearoa. A prominent tobacco company was able to sponsor an event at NZ Fashion Week (NZFW), despite NZFW's 'elite partnership' with the Ministry of Social Development to address ethical and sustainable practices.

Download the fact sheet or the full report below