From the Readers

Smoke and be dammed

(China Daily)
Updated: 2011-01-04 08:09
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Comment on "NGO calls for tough action on tobacco control" (China Daily, Dec 29)

Tobacco-related diseases can be prevented more easily than many other diseases if the young generation is educated and made aware of the harmful effects of smoking, and public smoking areas are reduced and prices of cigarettes increased.

To treat smokers and victims of passive smoking the country spends a lot of money, which could otherwise have been spent on more urgent matters.

This is a drain on the economy, because the government has to pay more for people's healthcare bills.

In most countries across the world, governments have been reluctant to impose heavy taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products. But there are also some countries like Singapore that have made it a policy to discourage smokers.

China has to ignore the small benefits that tobacco companies create and think of the wider benefits of taking strict tobacco control measures and imposing restrictions on tobacco-makers.

Tony TT, on China Daily website

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(China Daily 01/04/2011 page9)