Welcome of the Association of European Cancer Leagues

Dear Colleagues,

We are privileged to be inviting you to attend the Eighth European Conference on Tobacco or Health (ECToH) in Berlin, from 19 to 22 February 2020.

ECToHs are organised every three years under the auspices of the Association of European Cancer League. These Conferences are recognised internationally as the main European forum for tobacco control advocates.  Each ECToH is attended by the most important policy makers, scientists, researchers, advocacy officers, health professionals as well as all others strongly committed in the fight against tobacco.

Since the First ECToH in 1996 in Finland, we have made progress in combating the tobacco epidemic with the adoption and implementation of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, the 2014 EU Tobacco Products Directive. But we are still not there. Tobacco is the major cause of cancer and remains one of the leading causes for death and disease in Europe.

We are proud that the Eighth ECToH is being held in Berlin, hosted by the German Cancer Society, the German Cancer Aid and German Smokefree Alliance and Europan Cancer League. To improve the health of the European citizens, we need the support of Germany.  In the same way, Germany needs the support of Europe to improve its tobacco control legislation. This country should become in the near future one of the leading countries in the Tobacco Control Scale, the scale which quantifies the implementation of tobacco control policies of European countries.

Our goal is to make Europe tobacco free in the next 20 years.  This conference will enforce cooperation and strengthen our movement to achieve that goal.

Dr Sakari Karjalainen,
President, Association of European Cancer Leagues (ECL)

Welcome of the German hosting societies

Dear Colleagues,

Every year over 120,000 people in Germany die of illnesses caused by smoking. These include, in particular, cardiovascular disease and cancer. Especially in lung cancer, smoking is one of the main risk factors. Four out of five lung cancer deaths in Germany are due to smoking. Nevertheless, about 25% of the population over the age of 18 still smoke. And even though cigarette smoking among young people is declining, new products such as e-cigarettes and heat-not-burn products are on the rise.

Smoking prevention is an important goal which is pursued by the German Cancer Society and the German Cancer Aid in a joint effort with other partners within the framework of the German Smokefree Alliance. Therefore, we are very pleased to welcome the European Conference on Tobacco or Health in Berlin for the first time. Fortunately, the German Cancer Congress, the largest oncological expert conference in the German-speaking area, will be held close by at the same time, providing a great opportunity for exchange and discussion, not only with medical doctors, but also prevention experts, epidemiologists and politicians. Participating is worthwhile.