Germany joins anti-tobacco forces

The German government has joined the list of 47 countries that have now ratified the World Health Organisation's Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. This means that the German government has now committed itself to stamping out tobacco sponsorship. This is important as Germany boasts two Grands Prix. This will inevitably have an effect on the use of tobacco sponsorship at the European and German Grands Prix, which have both featured tobacco sponsorship in recent years, despite the fact that the German's cigarette industry association, Verband der CigarettenIndustrie, has a self-imposed ban on advertising at sports events. This is overlooked for Grand Prix racing.

Up to now the German government has been against European legislation including an announcement in 2003 that the government was joining forces with the Nurburgring to make a legal challenge to the European Court of Justice over the change to EU law which accelerated the imposition of a pan-European tobacco ban to July 31 2005. That challenge has yet to get to court, if indeed it ever does.

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