Turkmenistan Former Soviet nation is the country with least number of smokers

This was made known by the World Health Organisation (WHO) chief Margaret Chan during a visit to the former Soviet nation.

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Turkmenistan has emerged as the country with the world’s lowest proportion of smokers.

This was made known by the World Health Organisation (WHO) chief Margaret Chan during a visit to the former Soviet nation.

Chan said that just 8% of the population smoked, according to WHO figures, even as she congratulated the country on the feat.

She noted that the country ratified the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in 2011 by which time it had already banned smoking in public places.

Also speaking at the forum, Vera Luiza da Costa e Silva, Head of the Convention Secretariat, challenged the Central Asian state to drive smoking down to 5% of the population in the coming years.

In 1990, 27% of Turkmen males over 15 and 1% of females smoked.

A decade later the country banned smoking in public places, state buildings and the army, as well as all forms of tobacco advertising.

By comparison, 31.1% of the global male population over the age of 15 smoked in 2012, while 6.2% of females were smokers.

In April the gas-rich country of more than five million held a month of public exercises and sporting events under the slogan “health and happiness.”

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