Concern over rise in use of e-cigarette

Staff Correspondent

20 June, 2019 12:00 AM printer

The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Wednesday expressed concern over marketing of e-cigarette and rise in its use among the youths across the country.

“Use of e-cigarette increased in Bangladesh to a great extent and it has already come to the market. It is being noticed that not only members of young generation, but people in general also use e-cigarette as an alternative to traditional cigarette, ” Professor Dr Arup Ratan Chowdhury, a member of National Drug Control Board and National Tobacco Control Task Force, said.

He came up with the statement at a press conference at the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare marking the No-Tobacco Day 2019.

Bablu Kumar Saha, additional secretary of health ministry, was present at the press conference while Md Khairul Alam Shiekh, coordinator of National Tobacco Control Cell of the ministry, read out a written statement.

Arup Ratan Chowdhury said that research was done in Australia and Canada and it  showed the harmful effects of e-cigarette. “They said the chemical of e-cigarette is seriously harmful to human health,” he added.

He further said that e-cigarette marketing may be a tactic of the cigarette companies across the world as an alternative market of traditional cigarettes.

The member of National Tobacco Control Task Force urged the health ministry to take the issue of e-cigarette seriously as e-cigarette marketing is stopped in the Bangladesh.

According to a survey of Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS) 2017, there are 0.2 percent people who use electronic cigarette in Bangladesh while 6.5 percent people heard about it.

In Bangladesh, use of tobacco among youths aged 15 and above dropped by 18.5 percent in last eight years till 2017. There are 35.3 percent tobacco users in the country while 18 percent of the population smoke tobacco, 20.6 percent use smokeless tobacco and 14 percent are cigarette smokers, it said.