'Complete restriction' of tobacco: professor

0 CommentsPrint E-mail CRI, August 23, 2010
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A professor from Tsinghua University on Sunday warned that tobacco has become a primary threat to Chinese people's health, and the tobacco industry is the most harmful to health of all industries in the nation, China News Service reports.

Speaking at a seminar on tobacco control in Beijing, Hu Angang, who is also a member of the expert panel for the national development and planning committee, called on the country to enter into a phase of "complete restriction" of tobacco in the upcoming "12th five-year plan period," which will last from 2011 to 2015.

According to Hu, "complete restriction" of tobacco means categorizing tobacco-related industries into restricted industries, and making tobacco controls and bans in public places part of the national plan.

Hu said that protecting public health constitutes one of the government's basic functions, and the country should nail down details on tobacco control in its blueprint for the next five year's development. Hu also suggested that the National People's Congress, the country's top legislature, draft laws on banning tobacco in public places as soon as possible.

One million people died from tobacco-related diseases in China in the year 2000 alone, more than the total fatalities combined by AIDS, TB, traffic accidents and suicide, according to Hu. If the trend is not reversed, 2 million people in the country will have died from tobacco-related causes in 2025, and 3 million in 2050, Hu said.

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