World No Tobacco Day 2017: Tobacco – a threat to development

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World No Tobacco Day 2017

The theme for World No Tobacco Day 2017 is “Tobacco – a threat to development.”  

About 6 million people die from tobacco use every year, a figure that is predicted to grow to more than 8 million a year by 2030 without intensified action. Tobacco use is a threat to any person, regardless of gender, age, race, cultural or educational background. It brings suffering, disease, and death, impoverishing families and national economies.

Tobacco use costs national economies enormously through increased health-care costs and decreased productivity. It worsens health inequalities and exacerbates poverty, as the poorest people spend less on essentials such as food, education and health care. Some 80% of premature deaths from tobacco occur in low- or middle-income countries, which face increased challenges to achieving their development goals.

Tobacco threatens us all.

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- Message of the regional director, Dr Matshidiso Moeti, on the occasion of world no tobacco day, 31 May 2017