Tobacco Industry Efforts to Erode Tobacco Advertising Controls in Hungary (2004)

Authors: Tibor Szilagyi and Shaun Chapma

Abstract

Objective: To review strategies of transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) at creating a favourable advertising environment for their products in Hungary, with special regard to efforts resulting in the liberalisation of tobacco advertising in 1997.

Method: Analysis of internal tobacco industry documents relevant to Hungary available on the World Wide Web. Transcripts of speeches of members of the Parliament during the debate of the 1997 advertising act were also reviewed.

Conclusions: The tobacco companies not only entered the Hungarian market by early participation in the privatisation of the former state tobacco monopoly, but also imported theirsophisticated marketing experiences. Evasion and violation of rules in force, creation of new partnerships, establishment and use of front groups, finding effective ways for influencing decision makers were all parts of a well orchestrated industry effort to avoid a strict marketing regulation for tobacco products.

Read more: Central European Journal of Public Health