Baku, Azerbaijan, Sept. 5
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:
There are 11 million cigarette and hookah smokers in Iran, Ali Akbar Sayyari, deputy health minister said, adding the figure is equal to 14 percent of the Iranian population.
Sayyari explained that 5 million of Iranians smoke cigarette, meanwhile the number of hookah smokers hits 6 million, the country's official IRNA news agency reported Sept. 5.
The official underlined that over $3.758 billion (based on official rate of 26,600 rials per each USD) is being spent in Iran annually for smokes as well as treatment of smoking related illnesses.
The number of female smokers in Iran accounted for 4.5 percent. Women are prohibited to enter places of hookah smoking in the Islamic Republic.
According to the Iranian Customs Administration's latest monthly report, the country imported $40.5 million worth of cigarettes during the 5-month period from March 21 to Aug. 23, or 47.8 percent more year on year.
Statistics show that 45 percent of cigarettes in the Iranian market have been imported illegally.
Iran produced 19.011 billion cigarettes in the past Iranian fiscal year, which ended on March 20, Managing Director of the Iranian Tobacco Company Masoum Najafian said. The figure indicates a 14.93 percent increase compared to Iran's cigarette production in the Iranian year ended in March 2013
Domestic companies supply only half the country's cigarette consumption, Najafian said, noting that Iranians annually pay $1.63 billion for cigarettes. According to official figures, 63.8 million cigarettes were smoked in Iran last year.