• July 23, 2024

Japan: Male Smoking Drops to Historic Low

 Japan: Male Smoking Drops to Historic Low
Photo: Colleen Williams

Fewer than one third of Japanese men are smoking. Male cigarette consumption slipped to 28.8 percent last year, according to the national livelihood survey, a study conducted every three years by the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry. In 2016, the male smoking figure was 31.1 percent. The female smoking rate fell 0.7 points to 8.8 percent over the same period.
 
By age bracket, smokers in their 20s saw the biggest drops, with the ratio for men falling 4.1 points to 27 percent and the ratio for women dropping 1.9 points to 8.3 percent.
 
Most smokers in Japan are in their 40s, with rates of 37.6 percent for men and 13.4 percent for women.
 
The male smoking rate has been declining since hitting 48.4 percent in 2001. The downtrend is likely driven by growing health awareness and stricter anti-tobacco policies. In April, Japan banned smoking indoors at restaurants, offices, in hotel lobbies and other public places.
 
 The survey of people aged 20 or over counted as smokers those who smoke “every day” or “sometimes.”