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Philip Morris International Steps Up Call for Acceptance of Smoke-Free Products

Countries like the US, the UK and New Zealand among others have taken positive steps in this direction

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This is the best way to maximize the public health potential of innovative products. Pixabay

As Chief Operating Officer at Philip Morris International (PMI), it is my job to help realize our transformation. Today, this means unsmoking the world. In fact, this is something we at PMI have been actively engaged in for more than 20 years. Yes, thats right. It has been nearly two decades since we began researching, developing and scientifically assessing smoke-free products as part of our commitment to creating a smoke-free future, which is now becoming a reality. However, for us to unsmoke the world, it is crucial to unsmoke India, which is home to over 100 million adult smokers.

Since the debut of our main smoke-free product in Japan and Italy in 2014, we have been able to make these less harmful smoke-free alternatives available in 45 additional markets. More than 7.3 million adults worldwide have switched to our smoke-free alternatives (as of March 31, 2019).

In India, too, the scientific community, NGOs and the government have an opportunity to initiate a scientific and rational debate on the potential public health benefit that science-based smoke-free alternatives can bring for smokers who would otherwise continue smoking and injure public health. Countries like the US, the UK and New Zealand among others have taken positive steps in this direction. The Indian regulatory authorities can be among this select number of pioneering governments by defining a regulatory framework whereby a variety of scientifically substantiated smoke-free alternatives can be offered to adult smokers, within clear commercialization guidelines and marketing/communication requirements. This is the best way to maximize the public health potential of innovative products, while minimizing unintended use, such as by minors and non-smokers.

This approach presents a huge opportunity to address the problem of cigarette smoking in India. There is a growing body of science that points to these smoke-free products being significantly less harmful than continued smoking, and we hope that the Indian government will look at the evidence and work towards creating an appropriate regulatory framework for these smoke-free products.

Philip Morris International, Smoke-Free Products
In India, too, the scientific community, NGOs and the government have an opportunity to initiate a scientific and rational debate on the potential public health benefit. Pixabay

All of this may surprise you if your perception is that PMI is strictly a cigarette company. But the truth is, not only does this makes good business sense for us, it is the right thing to do. Nine out of 10 adult smokers continue smoking each year, so regardless of your opinion of our industry, there is one thing on which we should all agree: These individuals deserve better options.

It has taken hundreds of scientists, thousands of tests and billions of dollars to develop products without cigarette smoke: Smoke-free products that don’t burn tobacco, products that adult smokers can switch to completely and not return to cigarettes.

These smoke-free products contain nicotine and are not risk free. However, the science supports their potential to be a better choice than continued smoking. We share our science and data openly with the scientific and medical communities, as well as with governments throughout the world. We look forward to having the same dialogue in India, and to be able to present our science openly and transparently to the scientific community here as well as to the Indian government.

The best choice any adult smoker can make is to quit altogether. But those who don’t quit deserve access to these alternative products. They also deserve current information in order to make their own choices.

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By encouraging the men and women who don’t quit to completely adopt smoke-free alternatives, we can eventually leave cigarettes behind.

That’s why today we believe it’s time to evolve World No Tobacco Day into World No Smoking Day. It’s time to unsmoke the world and to unsmoke India – starting by initiating this dialogue in India and for the Indian government to play a leadership role in ensuring that harm reduction for adult smokers who would otherwise continue smoking becomes the third significant pillar in India’s tobacco control strategy together with abstinence and cessation. The result will be a benefit to overall public health. (IANS)

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Canon Doing Research and Feasibility Studies to Explore the Possibility of Manufacturing its Products in India

The new PIXMA G6070, PIXMA G5070 and PIXMA GM2070 printers that Canon India introduced on Wednesday are competitively priced at Rs 21,499, Rs 17,399 and Rs 14,299 respectively

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Canon
DSLR leader Canon brings its first mirrorless camera to India.

By Gokul Bhagabati

Japanese digital imaging major Canon, which launched three high speed “Ink Tank” printers in the G-series in India on Wednesday, is doing research and feasibility studies to explore the possibility of manufacturing its products in India, a top company executive said.

“Right now all our products are manufactured outside India. But we are doing research and feasibility studies to see if it is practical to manufacture in India,” Kazutada Kobayashi, President & CEO, Canon India, told IANS.

Terming India a very important market, Kobayashi said that Canon is eyeing over 10 per cent revenue growth from the India market this year.

“In 2018, we earned a revenue of Rs 2,811 crore. This year our target is to grow at over 10 per cent,” he said.

“We do not have a concrete plan to manufacture in India yet, but if we want everything is possible,” Kobayashi said.

While the printer business is declining in the country in line with the drop in the personal computer market, India has witnessed growth in the inkjet category – printers which are generally preferred in homes and small businesses.

Within the inkjet category, the Ink Tank printers have done well in the market.

“India has witnessed a rapid growth in the inkjet business for Canon and has been one of our top priority markets for expansion,” said Tamaki Hashimoto, Group Executive of Consumer Inkjet Group & Executive Officer of Canon Inc.

“Our Ink Tank business in India has an excellent blend of home and office customers, which gives us the opportunity to have a balanced focus between B2C (business to customers) and B2B (business to business) segments,” Hashimoto said.

Representational image. Pixabay

Canon India said that while it aims to achieve a 25 per cent share in the India Ink Tank business, in the overall inkjet category, its target is to achieve 12 per cent market share in 2019.

“We are putting equal emphasis on the B2B (including business to government) and the B2C spheres to expand our India business,” Kobayashi said.

“Canon has always been trying to become unique in the market. We want to offer best advantage of our technology to the customers. One good example is our unique printer head called Fine. This epoch-making technology makes our products different from others.

“Our products will attract certain groups of people. The colour analysis, resolutions, speed of printing and balance of cost for it will attract certain segment who care for value for money,” he said, adding that a price war in the printing business has always been there.

Kobayashi said that to expand its B2B business, Canon India introduced a business imaging solution lounge last year.

“General customers can walk in to stores, but businesses do not walk in. Therefore we introduced the business imaging solution lounge the first of which was opened in Daryaganj, New Delhi,” Kobayashi said.

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“We now have six such facilities spread across different parts of the country. Our aim is open 15 such facilities in the country by the end of 2019,” he added.

The new PIXMA G6070, PIXMA G5070 and PIXMA GM2070 printers that Canon India introduced on Wednesday are competitively priced at Rs 21,499, Rs 17,399 and Rs 14,299 respectively.

The printers are equipped with duplex (both sides) printing and Artificial Intelligence (AI) support for compatibility with smart speakers, Canon India said. (IANS)