MCHP Seminar: A win for public health – tobacco plain packaging

Image of decomposing cigarette packet

Event details


Date & time

Wednesday 27 April 2016


Seminar Room 1.04, Coombs Extension Building (8), Fellows Road, ANU
ANU Canberra


John Atwood and Jonathan Liberman


Janice Lee
+61 2 6125 6037

Philip Morris Asia Ltd’s challenge to Australia’s tobacco plain packaging laws under the Investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) provisions of the Australia-Hong Kong Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) marked Australia’s first involvement as a Respondent in ISDS. In this Menzies Centre for Health Policy seminar, Mr Atwood and Mr Liberman will discuss the arbitration, Australia’s defence of Philip Morris Asia Ltd’s challenge, and the consequences of the Tribunal’s December 2015 award in favour of Australia.

About the Speakers

John Atwood is a lawyer in the Office of International Law, Attorney-General’s Department. He led the Tobacco Litigation Taskforce which was responsible for Australia’s defence in the arbitration brought by Philip Morris Asia Ltd under the Australia-Hong Kong BIT. Prior to joining the Taskforce in 2012 he held a number of senior legal positions in international organisations.

Jonathan Liberman is Director of the McCabe Centre for Law and Cancer, a joint Jinitiative of Cancer Council Victoria (CCV) and the Union for International Cancer Control, based at CCV in Melbourne. The McCabe Centre’s mission is to contribute to the effective use of law for cancer prevention, treatment, supportive care and research globally.

Jonathan is a lawyer with over fifteen years’ experience in legal and policy research, advice, training, capacity building and technical support relating to cancer/non-communicable disease (NCD)prevention and control at both domestic and global levels. Under Jonathan’s leadership, the McCabe Centre has become a WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control Knowledge Hub, and established an international legal training program that builds capacity and expertise in the use of law for cancer/NCD prevention and control, particularly in the context of developing coherence between health, trade, investment and sustainable development.

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