Higher taxes do curb smoking: World Health Organisation

Higher taxes do curb smoking: World Health Organisation

At least 50 countries, many in Europe, impose even higher taxes. And that is the correct thing to do, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). In its release marking World No Tobacco Day today, it says: "Research shows that higher taxes are especially effective in reducing tobacco use among lower-income groups and in preventing young people from starting to smoke."


Get the full story from The Straits Times.

In a statement from the Health Promotion Board (HPB) on Saturday, it announced its Tobacco Control Strategy to reduce adult smoking prevalence in Singapore to 12 per cent by 2020.

HPB's Tobacco Control strategy will adopt a two-pronged approach to reduce smoking prevalence in Singapore, by preventing initiation amongst youths by bringing programmes upstream to schools and strengthening infrastructure to provide more support and improving accessibility to smoking cessation programmes to encourage smokers to quit.

Here is the statement from HPB:

Singapore, 31 May 2014 - Health Promotion Board (HPB) today announced its Tobacco Control Strategy to reduce adult smoking prevalence in Singapore to 12 per cent by 2020.

HPB's Tobacco Control strategy will adopt a two-pronged approach to reduce smoking prevalence in Singapore: (1) preventing initiation amongst youths by bringing programmes upstream to schools and (2) strengthening infrastructure to provide more support and improving accessibility to smoking cessation programmes to encourage smokers to quit. The strategy is a structured approach that complements regulations and anti-smoking restrictions, which are necessary but not sufficient for reducing smoking rates.

Recent findings from the National Health Surveillance Survey (NHSS) 2013 show that the Government's long-term efforts to reduce smoking-related diseases in Singapore have shown some results. The rate of adult smoking prevalence has stabilised at 13.3 per cent in 2013, compared to 13.6 per cent in 2007.

Associate Professor Faishal Ibrahim, Parliamentary Secretary for Health said, "Singapore's multi-pronged approach to tobacco control has ensured that smoking prevalence in Singapore is amongst the lowest in the world, at 13.3 per cent. Under the Healthy Living Master Plan, the Tobacco Control Strategy will take our efforts to the next level to further drive down adult smoking prevalence levels by preventing initiation amongst youths and supporting adult smokers to quit for good."

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