Economic recovery, adjusting to a post-pandemic environment and changes in political leadership usher in a time of both hope and uncertainty. This is the landscape in which the tobacco industry continues to aggressively pursue its goals, including on public governance.
The adroitness of Big Tobacco manifested itself in these particularly trying times. Its decades-old tactics for surviving and flourishing amid different crises—political, societal, legal, and reputational—are brazenly
updated. Hardships provided opportunities for tobacco companies to improve their standing and present themselves in a positive light and as part of the solution.
The tobacco companies still tried to portray themselves as the good samaritans. In the period
covered by this report, they have positioned themselves as partners in economic recovery and social development, as well as champions of justice and equal opportunities.
Their ways remain insidious: hobnobbing with political leaders, speaking out at public assemblies and getting involved in government projects at national and local levels, to weave their presence into the fabric of
Big Tobacco’s association with the government is particularly dangerous. This opens up pathways to diluting public health policies and influencing.