Tobacco Use Decline in Turkey

Tobacco Use

Smoking rate in Turkey has greatly reduced due to tobacco regulations and anti-smoking campaigns. According to the latest report on tobacco use across the world released by the WHO, in the past four years the number of smokers has declined by more than one million.  In Turkey, the smoking rate significantly decreased from 32.2%, 16 million, in 2008 to 27.1%, 14.8 million, in 2012.

Turkey is famous for an old tradition of tobacco use and that is the reason why it has a high smoking prevalence among men, but these days tobacco use is declining. The number of smokers in Turkey was reduced by 13.4% since 2008, 13.5% for men; 13.7% for women. More than a quarter of Turkey’s adult people continue to use tobacco.

According to the WHO’s report, the persentage of adult male smokers was reduced from 47.9% in 2008 to 41.5% in 2012 in Turkey. The number of women who smoke, decreased from 15.2% in 2008 to 13.1% in 2012.  It was found that Turkey is the only country across the globe that manages to protect its big population of 75 million people with  anti-tobacco measures introduced by WHO.

The WHO report writes that Turkey is a perfect example of collaboration between the WHO, government, international health organizations and civil society. The WHO is satisfied with the results Turkish government obtained in its fight against tobacco use.  Today Turkey is showing an example for other countries to follow and implement all six measures at the strongest level.

Though Turkey began to fight against smoking in 1996, in the contry smoking ban came into effect in 2009 and outlawed smoking in all indoor public places such as cafes, taxis, bars, restaurants, trains and outdoor stadiums.

For many years tobacco taxes in Turkey do represent 65 – 70% of the retail price. Since 2008, taxes were gradually increased, and now represent 80.3% of the retail price.

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