Opium, tobacco and alcohol: the evolving legitimacy of international action.

McKee, M; (2009) Opium, tobacco and alcohol: the evolving legitimacy of international action. Clinical medicine (London, England), 9 (4). pp. 338-41. ISSN 1470-2118

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There is a broad consensus that international trade in goods is beneficial, providing of course that it is fair. Yet not all things that are traded are goods. Some can more appropriately be considered as 'bads'. The way things are viewed can change over time. Over a century ago the U.K. fought a war with China for the right to trade in narcotics yet now interdicts such shipments on the high seas. More recently, the international community has agreed the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, showing that tobacco is moving from a good to a bad. However, there are other things that are legitimately traded where restrictions may be needed, such as alcohol. Global trade is simply a means to an end. The ultimate goal must include better health for all.

Item Type: Article
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Public Health and Policy > Dept of Health Services Research and Policy
Research Centre: ECOHOST - The Centre for Health and Social Change
Centre for Global Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs)
PubMed ID: 19728506
Web of Science ID: 269025000011
URI: http://researchonline.lshtm.ac.uk/id/eprint/4867


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