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Sri Lanka

Harm

Tobacco harms the health, the treasury, and the spirit of Sri Lanka. Every year more than 13100 of it's people are killed by tobacco-caused disease, while more than 13000 children and more than 1891000 adults continue to use tobacco each day. Complacency in the face of the tobacco epidemic will ensure the tobacco industry continues to run roughshod over the lives of Sri Lanka's citizens and ensure that tobacco's death toll will grow with each passing year. Tobacco control advocates must reach out to other communities to strengthen their efforts in this mortal fight.

Deaths

% caused by tobacco: 2010

14.1% of Men

Even though fewer men die on average in Sri Lanka than other middle-income countries, still 222 men are being killed by tobacco every week, necessitating action from policymakers.

3.5% of Women

Even though fewer women die on average in Sri Lanka than other middle-income countries, still 31 women are being killed by tobacco every week, necessitating action from policymakers.

Tobacco use also...

Harms Development

Buying tobacco robs families of the resources they need to rise out of poverty. A smoker in Sri Lanka would have to spend 15.2% the of national median income to purchase 10 of the cheapest cigarettes to smoke each day!

Harms Environment

Cigarette butts are the most commonly discarded piece of waste worldwide. It is estimated that 1.69 billion pounds of butts wind up as toxic trash, which is roughly equivalent to the weight of 177,895 endangered African elephants.

Harms Equality

To find more customers, the tobacco industry markets its products aggressively to women and children.

Harms NCDs

People living with mental illness are nearly twice as likely to smoke as other persons.

Industry

The combined revenues of the world's 6 largest tobacco companies in 2013 was USD342 Billion, 81% larger than the Gross National Income of Sri Lanka. The industry is a powerful force that does not fear the actions of nation-states because their resources are often much larger.

Market

Adult Smoking % using tobacco daily, 2013

23.6%of Men

Even though fewer men smoke on average in Sri Lanka than on average in middle-income countries, still 1810800 men still smoke cigarettes each day, the sign of an ongoing and dire public health threat.

1%of Female

Even though fewer women smoke on average in Sri Lanka than on average in middle-income countries, still 80200 women still smoke cigarettes each day, the sign of an ongoing and dire public health threat.

Children Smoking % using tobacco daily, 2013

2.8%of Boys

Even though fewer boys smoke on average in Sri Lanka than on average in middle-income countries, still 11900 boys still smoke cigarettes each day, the sign of an ongoing and dire public health threat.

0.3%of Girls

Even though fewer girls smoke on average in Sri Lanka than on average in middle-income countries, still 1200 girls still smoke cigarettes each day, the sign of an ongoing and dire public health threat.

Smokeless% currently using tobacco, 2013 or most recent

15.8%of Adults

More people use smokeless tobacco in Sri Lanka than on average in middle-income countries.

Solutions

Tobacco control policy is an excellent investment in the health of a country's population. According to the WHO, for less than Rs 9 per person per year Sri Lanka will be able to pay for the four 'best buys' in tobacco control policy, raising tobacco excise taxes, enforcing a comprehensive national smoke-free law and a ban on tobacco advertising and promotion, and mandating large graphic warning labels appear on tobacco product packaging. This small investment will reap enormous dividends in health and prosperity.

Current Policy in Sri Lanka

Protect From Smoke

Smokefree HealthCare FacilitiesYes
Smokefree UniversitiesYes
Smokefree Government FacilitiesYes
Smokefree Indoor OfficesYes
Smokefree RestaurantsNo
Smokefree Pubs and BarsNo
Smokefree Public TransportYes
All Other Indoor Public Places SmokefreeN/A
Funds for Smokefree EnforcementYes

Offer Help

Quitting SolutionsNRT and/or some cessation services (neither cost-covered)
National QuitlineYes

Warn about the dangers to tobacco users on product packaging

Type of Warning Labels

Australia(best practice)

Graphic

Sri Lanka

Graphic

Percent of Pack Covered

Australia(best practice)

82.5%

Sri Lanka

80%

Graphic Warning Rounds

Australia(best practice)

2

Sri Lanka

1

Has Plain/Standardized Packaging

Australia(best practice)

Yes

Sri Lanka

No

Warn about the dangers to whole population in a media campaign

Ran a national anti-tobacco campaign during 2011 and 2012

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

No Data

Part Of A Comprehensive Tobacco Control Program

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Pre-Tested With The Target Audience

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Target Audience Research Was Conducted

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Aired On Television And/Or Radio

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Utilized Media Planning

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Earned Media/Public Relations Were Used To Promote The Campaign

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Process Evaluation Was Used To Assess Implementation

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Outcome Evaluation Was Used To Assess Effectiveness

WHO Best Practice

Yes

Sri Lanka

N/A

Enforce bans on advertising

Number of Bans on Forms of Direct Advertising5 of a possible 7 bans
Number of Bans on Forms of Indirect Advertising5 of a possible 7 bans
Ad Ban Compliance PercentHigh% self-rated compliance

Raise Taxes

Excise Tax as a % of Cigarette Price

WHO Benchmark

75% of Retail Price is Excise Tax

Sri Lanka

51.43% of Retail Price is Excise Tax

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