Formula 1 has no plans to forbid its teams from entering sponsorship agreements with tobacco companies despite pleas from various NGOs and the World Health Organization for a ban.
Though FIA chief Jean Todt has claimed that the sport emphasizes with the WHO and are in complete alignment with the organisation, there aren’t likely to be any regulations passed by the body which disallows the teams from having tobacco companies on board as a sponsor.
Todt said on the issue as quoted by the Guardian:
“For many years tobacco advertising is forbidden. So we completely support the WHO position. There is little more we can say. We are allied very closely with the WHO and well aligned with their position.”
This stance was also taken by F1 CEO Chase Carey who added:
“We have rules. We work with the teams and the sponsors to respect the rules that exist.”
In F1, endorsements of tobacco products directly are not allowed. But logos of companies like Mission Winnow are still found on cars like Ferrari despite being owned by Phillip Morris which also owns Marlboro cigarettes.
But as the brand does not directly endorse smoking, leeways have been made by the Formula 1 governing body.
The World Health Organization appealed to all the sporting bodies around the world to stop such advertising, but the plea is likely to fall on deaf ears as far as Formula 1 is concerned.