Tobacco use is a leading cause of preventable death and disease worldwide, with more than 7 million tobacco-related deaths every year. If current trends continue, tobacco use is expected to result in an estimated 1 billion deaths by the end of the century, with most of these deaths from low- and middle-income countries.
With the continuing decline in cigarette smoking in high-income countries, Africa has become a prime market for the tobacco industry because of its economic and demographic contexts. The situation is exacerbated by marked rates of youth initiation, the introduction of new tobacco products, and extensive marketing by the tobacco industry. It is therefore critical for countries in the World Health Organization African Region to fully implement the World Health Organization Framework
Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC) provisions to combat the tobacco epidemic. Countries are making progress in addressing the tobacco epidemic by strengthening implementation of the WHO FCTC, including in the African Region. Examples of two countries that have participated in the Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) and have made important progress are Senegal and Uganda. Senegal’s National Tobacco Control Law, enacted in 2014, and subsequent decrees emphasize multisectoral coordination, led by the Ministry of Health, toward swift implementation, enforcement, and compliance with the law. Uganda’s Tobacco Control Act of 2015 includes a requirement for 100% smoke-free public places; a 100% ban on tobacco advertisements; pictorial health warnings covering no less than 65% of tobacco product packaging; and a ban on single-stick sales, among other provisions. These are just a few examples of many countries making significant tobacco control progress in the African Region, and more remains to be done