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Beware big tobacco bearing gifts: tobacco industry corporate social responsibility activities in Greece
  1. Nefeli A Taravira1,
  2. Louis Laurence2,
  3. Filippos T Filippidis1
  1. 1 Department of Primary Care and Public Health, Imperial College London, London, UK
  2. 2 Department for Health, University of Bath, Bath, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Filippos T Filippidis, Department of Primary Care and Public Health, Imperial College London, London, UK; f.filippidis{at}

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The WHO recommends that parties of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC) should “denormalize and, to the extent possible, regulate activities described as ‘socially responsible’ by the tobacco industry, including but not limited to activities described as ‘Corporate Social Responsibility’ (CSR)”.1 2 However, governments continue to accept and endorse CSR activities led by tobacco companies, a trend that has intensified during the COVID-19 pandemic.3 This report highlights recent CSR activities by Papastratos, the Greek subsidiary of Philip Morris International (PMI).4

During the pandemic, Papastratos has been involved in various activities described by the company as CSR, which have given the company a platform to promote its activities and speak directly to the Greek government. The company’s largest initiative focused on supporting small retail businesses.5 To this direction, Papastratos has committed 10 million euros and collaborated with technology companies to provide discounts and offers for small retail businesses.6 In a shared press conference in September 2020, the Greek Minister of Development and Investment praised Papastratos …

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  • Contributors FTF had the initial idea. NT and FTF conducted the search for relevant content and prepared the first draft. All authors reviewed and edited the draft.

  • Funding LL acknowledges the support of Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Stopping Tobacco OrganizationsOrganisations and Products funding ( The opinions expressed are those of the authors’ alone. The funders had no role in the analysis, decision to publish, preparation or review of the manuscript. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the views of the funders.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.