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Current news Act. 03 Aug 2017

Today's number is about... tobacco

According to a study by Eurobarometer, 26% of Europeans currently smoke, the same percentage as smoked in 2014, although tobacco consumption among youth aged 15 to 24 years is up 5%, to 29%.

By contrast, 20% of Europeans have stopped smoking, which percentage rises to 22% for Spaniards. In Spain, 28% of Spaniards smoke, which is two percentage points above the European average and places Spaniards among those who smoke the most in the European Union.

The survey data indicates that those who smoke the most in Europe are Greeks (37%), Bulgarians and the French (36% each), and Croatians (35%), which highlights the fact that Southern Europeans continued to have the heaviest tobacco consumption. In addition, the citizens of Latvia (32%), Poland (30%), and the Czech Republic and Lithuania (29% each) also smoke more than Spaniards, whereas Cyprians, Austrians, Romanians and Slovenians smoke as must as Spaniards (28%).

By contrast, the Europeans who smoke the least are the Swedes (7%) and British (17%). Others whose percentage of smokers is under 20% are the Belgians, Danish, Irish, and Dutch, who are among the Europeans who smoke the least.

Fifty-three per cent of Europeans have never smoked, which percentage drops to 50% among Spaniards. Twenty-four per cent of Europeans smoke every day, two percentage points less than that for Spaniards, whereas the average cigarette consumption in the EU is 14.1 per day (0.6 less than in 2014) and 11.7 in the case of Spaniards (2.2 less than in 2014).

Fifty-two per cent of Europeans began to smoke prior to age 18 (age 17.8 years, which is also the case for Spaniards) and began to smoke regularly at age 25.6 (age 24.6 in the case of Spaniards).

Fifty-two percent of Europeans and Spaniards have also attempted to quit smoking at least once. On average, Europeans quit smoking at age 38.6 and Spaniards at age 39.6.