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Paris — Former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, who made his fortune selling financial data, has given more than a billion dollars since 2007 to curb global tobacco use, which claims nearly 7-million lives every year. With World Health Organisation (WHO) director Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and South African Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi, Bloomberg will launch the World Conference on Tobacco or Health in Cape Town on March 7. Q: What is your long-term vision for the global fight against tobacco? A: If we could completely eliminate tobacco use today, it would prevent nearly 1-billion early deaths this century. Ten years ago 1-billion people were covered by a high-quality tobacco law, such as graphic health warnings and bans on indoor smoking. Today 5-billion people are. That progress has saved an estimated 35-million lives. The bad news is, as more cities and countries pass these laws, tobacco companies work even harder to get new customers hooked — especially young people. They a...

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