OREANDA-NEWS The main objective of the concept is a gradual reduction of tobacco smoking by 2050, and then a possible phase-out of tobacco products. This proposal is contained in the new concept of the Ministry of Health against tobacco Smoking until 2030.

In 2016, a third of Russians smoked - 30.9% - or more than 40 million people, indicates the Ministry of Health (more recent data is not available). By 2040-2050, only 5% of people with this habit will remain, the Ministry expects. This will make it possible to completely withdraw tobacco products from the market later.

The short-term goal of the Ministry of Health (until 2025) is to reduce the number of smokers by 5 percentage points to 25%, according to the concept.

This is not the first attempt of the Ministry of Health to develop a concept to reduce tobacco consumption. Earlier, the Ministry drafted the concept from 2017 to 2022. It contained many strict requirements: to prohibit the sale of tobacco products to citizens born after 2015; to prohibit smoking in communal apartments, at the entrances to shopping centers, at public transport stops, underground and land pedestrian crossings, private transport, if there are children in it. Also in the concept it was proposed to introduce an extended working day for smokers, and tobacco companies to impose an environmental tax.

This version of the concept was criticized by several ministries and as a result it was not adopted, two high-ranking officials said.

According to the Ministry of Health, now tobacco companies bring less to the budget than potentially healthy people could keep in it. For example, the state will not have to spend money on the detection and treatment of diseases caused by tobacco consumption, social benefits for diseases and the loss of a breadwinner. Also, without cigarettes, citizens would have increased ability to work and healthy life expectancy, reduced the time of disease. Thus, the loss of profit in the production of GDP — about 2%, analysts estimate the Agency.

Another measure proposed by the Ministry of Health is "to prevent the spread of new forms and types of tobacco products, including those consumed by heating tobacco". Now there are two such products on the Russian market: IQOS, which is produced by Philip Morris Int., and GLO by British American Tobacco.

Another important measure of the Ministry of Health, which was proposed in each version of the concept, is to increase the ad valorem and specific excise rate to the average level among the EU countries. Also, the Ministry of Health proposes to introduce certain requirements for the color and size of the cigarette pack.

The state also needs to introduce measures to prevent the sale of illegal tobacco products, the Ministry of Health said. Now the share of such products in the market has reached unprecedented levels: according to Nielsen analytical Agency, it increased from 4.5% in 2017 to 8.4% in the third quarter of 2018.