The Kingdom of Tonga is a Party to the Convention since 2005.
Although progress has been made in implementing some of the provisions of the WHO FCTC, such as increasing tobacco taxes, the smoking prevalence is still very high, especially among men (46%).
That is the reason why Tonga requested assistance from the Convention Secretariat for conducting a joint needs assessment mission to plan future actions to strengthen implementation of the WHO FCTC.
The mission took place back to back with the Western Pacific Regional Office a Workshop for the Implementation of the WHO FCTC and the Regional Action Plan for TFI in the Western Pacific (20152019), that took place in Fiji on 17-19 November 2015. This meeting discussed and agreed on priorities of work in the Pacific Islands.
After the subregonal meeting, the mission in Tonga took place from 20 to 23 November 2015. During the mission, a meeting of stakeholders representing different sectors of the government, civil society and academia took place to review implementation work, successes and challenges.
The main recommendations derived from the mission include :