It comes in a Coffin
Earlier today @GabrielGhali posted “Smoking Facts and Tobacco Statistics”
Figures about smoking/smokers in Lebanon are Impossible to find..(please prove me wrong with something more recent 2002, even that i couldn’t find!).. along with almost any other form of statistics that seem necessary.
But according to NowLebanon’s Post in 2010:
• Cigarette smoking costs the state about $327 million a year, roughly $55 million more than the profits made from tobacco sales
• 53 percent of Lebanese adults smoke (tobacco or arguileh)
• on average, a Lebanese adult smokes 12.4 packs of cigarettes per month
Figures are from a research by AUB Tobacco Control Research Group (TCRG), which also state that “Lebanon has one of the highest adult cigarette consumption rates in the WORLD at 12.4 packs per person per month”
Ironically, Lebanon has signed the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, almost 6 years ago… with no signs of implementation on ground, until recently..
..Lebanese Parliament did finally approve an Anti-Smoking Law, last month, banning smoking from public places and public transportation. (iloubnan, AnsaMed) According to BeirutNight Life.com, “Smoking At Night Clubs To Be Banned… Very Soon”
With such alarming rates, smokers in Lebanon are very resilient to smoking bans. And it’s not their fault: Cigarettes are cheaper than food in Lebanon.. at a price of $1.5 for a pack, who cares to rethink their habits.
If the average person smokes 12.4 packs a month, that costs them only $18.75, so the “highest adult cigarette consumption rate” title sounds overrated at such a price.
Banning smoking in public space is not enough, it’s not even a solution in a country where traffic lights are year-long-Christmas-ornaments. Strict measures must be imposed:
Increased Taxes on cigarette packs.
Fines for those that smoke in non-smoking areas (and i mean pricey-fines).
Requiring shops that sell tobacco to be Licensed.
Ban selling of tobacco at or near petrol stations with excessive punishment for those that do.
Imposing age restriction for individuals purchasing tobacco
… to start with…
Also, all these statistics, research, bans and efforts seem to be targeting Cigarette-smokers, we seem to have not realized that children as young as 10 years of age are no smoking “arguileh”, some people are smoking “arguileh” for breakfast on regular basis, and many more are addicted..
“Arguileh” doesn’t come in a small pack, it comes in a bigger coffin..
Smoke related sites: