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Jakarta Post

Calls grow for higher tobacco excise as smoking hinders social aid 

  • Ardila Syakriah

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, July 4, 2019   /  05:16 pm
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A study suggests that households with smoking members that receive social assistance have higher consumption of cigarettes than households with smoking members who did not receive assistance.(Courtesy of WHO/-)

Calls have mounted for an increase in tobacco excise after a recent study suggested that smoking has reduced the effectiveness of social funds disbursed to eradicate poverty. The study further showed that the funds could be used by recipients to purchase cigarettes that remain affordable in Indonesia, even to the poor. A study conducted by the University of Indonesia's Social Security Research Center (PKJS-UI) analyzing data from the 2016 and 2017 National Social and Economic Surveys (Susenas) revealed that households receiving social funds and comprising smoking members had worse socio-economic conditions compared with those who did not have smoking members. "We do not suggest that social assistance be stopped, because it has a great role in eradicating poverty. However, smoking harms the nutrient intake, education and health of children, so the target of the program c...