Author Archive: speccomm
The Jakarta city administration is to target students and low-income residents in a new anti-smoking campaign funded by cigarette tax revenue, according to a story in The Jakarta Post.
Starting from next year, the city is expected to receive about IDR400 billion (US$35.2 million) a year in revenue from cigarette excise tax.
“We are currently discussing and fleshing out the anti-smoking programs, which comprise not only curative but also preventive measures,” the head of the Jakarta Health Agency, Dien Emmawati, was quoted as saying.
“Most smokers in the capital are low-income residents so we will focus on educating them. We will also target students.”
Dien said the funds allocated for anti-smoking programs would be distinct from those allocated for financing the city’s health care program, which this year amounted to IDR1.2 trillion.
Levels of tobacco use by young people in the UAE were described as shocking on Monday after a new study had found that more than one in five boys aged 13 to 15 was a smoker, according to a story in The National.
The teenage smoking problem was being blamed on the availability of cheap cigarettes and inadequate education about the health risks associated with the habit.
“We know that youth smoking is at a high rate and smoking among the young is on the increase,” said Wedad Al Maidoor, head of the tobacco control committee at the Ministry of Health.
“The use is high but the good thing is we are acting on this. The sale to teenagers is very highly controlled and marketing of tobacco is not allowed any more.
“Smoke-free areas are increasing and increasing across the UAE. We are making progress.”
A World Health Organisation study found that in the UAE 21.3 percent of boys and 9 percent of girls aged 13 to 15 used tobacco, and it found that most preferred cigarettes to other products, such as shisha or dokha.
The study found also that, among adults, 28 percent of men and 2.4 percent of women smoked.
The Ministry of Health and Welfare says that women in their 20s and men in their 30s are the least health-conscious Koreans, according to a story in the Korea Joongang Daily.
The ministry’s concerns were based on the results of a national health survey.
It is thought that young women and men smoke and drink at a rate that might be linked to stress, their jobs and Korea’s corporate culture.
In Korea’s hierarchical corporate culture, young employees are expected to heed senior workers’ insistence on drinking at office get-togethers.
The findings were part of the 2013 national health survey conducted jointly by the Health Ministry and the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The survey polled people of all ages within 3,840 households.
Imperial Tobacco’s stick-equivalent volume sales during the year to the end of September, at 317 billion, were down by 7 percent on those of the year to the end of September 2012. Stick-equivalent sales include sales of cigarettes, and those of fine-cut, cigars and snus converted to cigarette-stick equivalents.
Meanwhile, the company reported that its stick-equivalent Growth-Brand volumes were down by 2 percent to 129 billion.
“Our growth brands account for a significant amount of our volume and revenue generation, and our aim is to increase this over time to further enhance the quality and sustainability of our business,” Imperial reported.
“These brands outperformed the market in the year, with volumes down less than the rate of market declines.
“Seven of our 10 growth brands grew share and on an aggregate basis, we grew the share of growth brands from 5.1 to 5.4 percent and increased net revenue by 2 percent.
“Growth brands now account for 41 percent of our total volumes, up from 39 percent last year, and 39 percent of tobacco net revenues, up from 38 percent last year.”
Imperial said, too, that while it was strengthening the sustainability of its core tobacco business, it was also pursuing opportunities for growth in other areas through its new standalone subsidiary, Fontem Ventures.
“Fontem Ventures has initially been focused on our entry into the fast growing e-vapour sector and will be launching its own products in 2014,” the company said.
“Fontem Ventures has also acquired further e-vapour assets and expertise from Dragonite International, a company founded by one of the pioneers of e-cigarette technologies, which has further enhanced our sector potential.”
Imperial’s tobacco revenue during the year to the end of September, at £20,881 millon, was down from £21,161 million during the year to the end of September 2012. Net revenue was up from £7,005 million to £7,007 million.
Operating profit from tobacco was up from £1,447 million to £1,888 million, while adjusted operating profit was up from £2,989 million to £3,003 million.
“Our focus on driving quality growth and transitioning the business has delivered another year of earnings growth and further strengthened our sustainability,” said Chief Executive Alison Cooper.
“Market conditions remain tough. We remain focused on maximizing our long-term growth potential, and in 2014 our priority is to continue transitioning the business: increasing investment behind our key brands and markets to drive quality growth, delivering our cost optimization program and implementing our stock optimization program.
“A reasonable working assumption for 2014 therefore is modest growth in earnings per share at constant currency, with another strong dividend increase of at least 10 percent.
“Our actions in 2013 and over the coming year will provide us with a strong platform for growth in 2015 and beyond.”
Commentators have already dubbed the Global Tobacco & Nicotine Forum (GTNF) the “Davos” of tobacco, after the prestigious World Economic Forum meetings in Switzerland—and for good reason.
From a humble experiment in Rio de Janeiro in 2008, the GTNF has grown into a force to be reckoned with on the international stage of tobacco events. The most recent edition, held at in October 2014 at the Greenbrier resort, attracted a record number of delegates from around the world, including tobacco executives, financial analysts and even public health advocates. The next GTNF will take place in September 2015 in Bologna, Italy.
Unlike a traditional congress, in which the audience “consumes” a series of prepared presentations, GTNF revolves around interaction. Participants have an opportunity to engage with the experts, enabling them to make contacts and gain insights that are difficult to achieve in more formal settings.