The WHO Regional Office for South-East Asia (SEARO) is actively assisting eleven (11) member states in the region to implement the provisions stated in the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) that was adopted in 2003 and came into force in 2005. Apart from Indonesia, ten out of eleven countries in the region have endorsed the convention i.e. Bangladesh, Bhutan, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, India, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Timor-Leste. The MPOWER technical package was introduced in 2008 to achieve the objectives of the FCTC and comprises six implementing proven measures to reduce demand for tobacco products, such as protecting people from tobacco smoke; enforce bans on tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorships; and raise taxes on tobacco.
Implementation and compliance of MPOWER have been regularly evaluated in Global Tobacco Control Reports and official reports from the FCTC to the Conference of the Parties. The current evaluation goes beyond these evaluations and provides important feedback for assessing the impact of FCTC implementation in the SEAR Member States after more than a decade of implementation of the treaty and the role of support provided by WHO to assist the countries in their tobacco control efforts to achieve the global, regional and national targets.
ACT for Performance already worked with the WHO in another multi-country evaluation, in the field of nutrition (11 Sub-Saharan African countries).