Russian Federation: Intensive legal training and capacity-building workshop for law and NCDs for NIS countries

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Date of publication: 
3 June 2016

The McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer – the WHO FCTC Knowledge Hub on trade and tobacco – in coordination with the WHO Regional Office for Europe, I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University and the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation jointly conducted an Intensive legal training and capacity-building workshop for law and NCDs for NIS countries in Moscow, Russian Federation from 30 May to 3 June 2016.

The workshop aimed to build capacity and facilitate effective multi-sectoral collaboration in the use of law for NCD prevention (covering tobacco use, harmful use of alcohol, and unhealthy diets and obesity), notably between health, trade and investment sectors. The workshop brought together over 45 government officials, and academics, from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Republic of Moldova, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Participants were drawn from a wide range of government departments and academic faculties, and diverse areas of expertise include law, health and economics.

Topics of focus included the legal weight and power of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control; implementation of Article 5.3 of the WHO FCTC; enforcement of tobacco control laws; the relationships between international trade and investment law and NCD prevention; and relevant regional European agreements.

The workshop coincided with this year’s World No Tobacco Day, the theme of which was Get Ready for Plain Packaging. Participants explored plain packaging as a case study of the important relationships between health, trade and investment laws and sectors, discussing the legal challenges brought against Australia’s plain packaging laws at domestic and international levels.

The workshop was financed through a voluntary contribution of the Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation. Lead presenters and facilitators included representatives of the WHO FCTC Knowledge Hub McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer, WHO Regional Office for Europe, I.M. Sechenov First Moscow State Medical University, University of Liverpool, and United Nations Development Programme.