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ECONOMICS > Turks smoke less, official statistics show

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While the percentage of Turks using tobacco products has fallen to 27 pct in 2012 from 31.3 pct back in 2008, men are still a high risk group. Furthermore, 9 pct of Turkey’s health spending is for smoking related illnesses

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The World Health Organization lists Turkey as one of the most risky countries in terms 
of cigarette usage. AA photo

The World Health Organization lists Turkey as one of the most risky countries in terms of cigarette usage. AA photo

The use of tobacco products is going down in Turkey. While 31.3 percent of people aged 15 and above were using tobacco products in 2008, this number has fallen to 27 percent in 2012, according to data provided by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK).

According to TÜİK’s 2012 Global Adult Tobacco Study, tobacco usage among the male population has fallen the most drastically. Male usage has dropped 6.5 points among men and only 2.1 points, among women, according to the study. Still, more men smoke than women. In 2008, 47.8 percent of men smoked and 15.2 percent of women. The 2012 figures show that 41.4 percent of men were smokers, while 13.1 percent of women were.

Women more likely to try to quit smoking

Furthermore, tobacco usage is most prevalent among the young and middle aged. Specifically daily or periodic tobacco usage was seen most in the 24-34 and 35-44 age brackets. However, while the 25-34 bracket accounted for 40.3 percent of overall tobacco usage in 2008, this percentage fell to 34.9 in 2012. The 35-44 age bracket accounted for 39.6 percent of tobacco usage in 2008 and was down to 36.2 percent this year.

According to the figures, women are more likely to try to quit using tobacco products. Over the past 12 months, 44.9 percent of female users have tried to quit, up from 40.8 percent in 2008.

The same figures for the male population are 41.8 percent and 40.5 percent respectively for 2012 and 2008.

Meanwhile, 9 percent of Turkey’s health expenditures are channeled towards tobacco related illnesses, according to statistics compiled by Turkey’s Social Security Institution (SKG) and the World Health Organization (WHO). Of the SGK’s 32.5 billion Turkish Liras in health spending, some $2.8 billion is allocated for tobacco-related illnesses.

The WHO described Turkey as being among the most risky countries in terms of cigarette smoking, and again mentioned that smoking in the country was much more prevalent among men.

September/01/2012

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