Big Tobacco's Last Gasps?

The World Health Organization announced that 40 nations have ratified the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The convention "changes the way Big Tobacco does business," said Kathryn Mulvey of Corporate Accountability International. The convention governs tobacco marketing, taxation and health warnings in signatory countries, starting in March 2005. Its terms will banish the Marlboro Man billboards currently in Mexico and end British American Tobacco-sponsored hip-hop contests in Ghana, not to mention Benson and Hedges cellphones in Sri Lanka. Perhaps readying for the change, BAT is sponsoring Kuwait's first corporate social responsibility conference, which is also supported by the United Nations Development Program.