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AKIPRESS.COM - Tobacco will account for 46% of all deaths in Africa by 2030 if consumption is not stopped, In2EastAfrica reported referring to a new report released over the weekend by Uganda National Academy of Sciences.
The report “Preventing a tobacco epidemic in Africa” indicates that the consumption and production of Tobacco in at least 21 African countries such as Malawi, Mozambique, Tanzania Zambia and Zimbabwe among other countries had gone up.
“There is often a perception that tobacco production is beneficial to the economy by increasing employment and providing income, however these short term benefits are outweighed by the long term economic, health and environmental issues that result from tobacco production and consumption,” said Professor Francis Omaswa, the executive director of the African Center for Global Health and Social Transformation.
The report indicates that the prevalence rates for tobacco smoking in Africa range from 8% to 48% in adult men and from 0.4% to 20% in adult women.
While women may currently make a smaller percentage of smokers, as male smoking peaks and declines, female prevalence is expected to continue to rise especially as gender differences in prevalence shrink among youth.
“Worldwide, tobacco use causes 12% of all deaths and 3% of deaths in Africa. Smoking is estimated to cause 71% of all lung cancer deaths, 42% of chronic respiratory disease and nearly 10% of cardiovascular disease,” the report said.
Without comprehensive tobacco prevention and control policies by African governments, it is estimated that smoking prevalence in the African region will increase by nearly 39% by 2030 from 15.8% in 2010.