"From today, all EU countries must comply with the Tobacco Products Directive, whose measures for tobacco productson the EU internal market aim to reduce the numbers of tobacco users with a particular focus on discouraging young people from taking up smoking and to ensure that citizens across the EU are fully aware of the harmful effects of tobacco use. I congratulate the countries that have already transposed the Directive into national law, and encourage an effective enforcement of the new rules in all Member States without delay. I am confident this will happen, and that the anti-tobacco momentum which has emerged in the EU in recent years – as evidenced by falling smoking rates and the introduction of plain packaging in some Member States – will continue to grow. The benefits of falling smoking rates are clear: not only do people enjoy better health and wellbeing, and significantly lower rates of chronic diseases and premature death related to tobacco, there is also a substantial economic benefit. A reduction in tobacco consumption of just 2% translates into annual healthcare savings of approximately €506 million for the EU.Once the new rules are applied and enforced in all 28 EU countries they will play a vital role in amplifying and consolidating the progress made to date. This makes the new Tobacco Products Directive a true triumph and a lasting legacy for public health in the EU."
For more information - press release on the 10 key changes to tobacco products sold in the EU, see here.