The Conference of the Parties (COP) is the governing body of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and is comprised of all the Parties to the Convention. It's purpose is to regularly review the implementation of the Convention and make decisions to promote its effective implementation, which may involve adopting protocols, annexes, and amendments to the Convention. The COP has met three times since the signing of the treaty. In order to participate in an upcoming COP, countries must ratify the Convention at least 90 days before the session.
First Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 1)
Held in Geneva in February 2006, the first session initiated development of possible protocols on cross-border advertising, sponsorship, and promotion and on illicit trade in tobacco products and initiated the elaboration of guidelines on Articles 8 (protection from exposure to tobacco smoke) and 9 (regulation of the contents of tobacco smoke).
Second Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 2)
Held in Bangkok, Thailand in June 2007, the second session adopted guidelines for the implementation of Article 8, elaborated guidelines for Articles 9 and 10 (regulation of tobacco product disclosures), and established an Intergovernmental Negotiating Body on a Protocol on Illicit Trade in Tobacco Products.
Third Session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 3)
At its third session in November 2008 held in Durban, South Africa, the Conference of the Parties (COP) adopted guidelines for implementation of Articles 5.3, 11, & 13 of the WHO FCTC. These articles focus on the protection of public health policies with respect to tobacco control from commercial and other vested interests of the tobacco industry; packaging and labeling of tobacco products; and tobacco advertising, promotion, and sponsorship, respectively.