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‘Tobacco Smoking in Sri Lanka: Identifying and Understanding the Last Mile Smokers’



• Recommends targetted interventions to reduce smoking prevalence in Sri Lanka

• Advocates continued price increases through taxation as a key policy intervention

• Calls for a ban on sale of single-stick cigarettes to reduce smoking prevalence rate

Tobacco smoking is a dangerous epidemic claiming eight million lives globally1 and is currently the world’s single most significant cause of preventable death. In Sri Lanka, more than 20,000 people are killed every year as a result of tobacco-related diseases. Despite tobacco smoking rates declining over the years, it was still 28.4% among males above 15 years in 2018, indicating that more than one in four males still smoke.

Secondary data analysis shows that smoking prevalence is higher among certain groups. IPS’ latest publication ‘Tobacco Smoking in Sri Lanka: Identifying and Understanding the Last Mile Smokers’ focuses on these groups – referred to as ‘Last Mile Smokers’ (LMS) in the report. The report is based on a study that identifies LMS, examines reasons behind their smoking initiation and continuation, their efforts to quit smoking, and their awareness of the adverse effects of smoking. The challenge for Sri Lanka now is to ‘go the last mile’ and reduce smoking prevalence among LMS.

Findings and recommendations

The study finds that LMS initiated smoking mostly in their youth as they were curious to experiment with new things; were under peer pressure; and were stimulated by smokers in the family, community and celebrities. They continued to smoke because it had become a habit or addiction; perceived smoking as a remedy to overcome job monotony; lacked incentives and support channels to stop smoking; and lacked the self-control to stop smoking.

According to the study, LMS want to quit smoking and require support measures to help them do so. Most of them had made at least one attempt to quit because of health concerns, financial reasons, and commitments towards their families and children. Almost all smokers from different sectors were aware of the adverse health and economic impacts of smoking. However, many were unaware of its adverse impact on the environment, and the effects of second-hand and third-hand smoking

The study also finds that LMS are sensitive to price increases and that price plays a crucial role in shaping smoking patterns, both in relation to initiation and continuation. Further, due to price increases in recent times, many smokers have switched from buying an entire pack to buying single sticks. In fact, 70% of the LMS who participated in the study purchase single sticks.

The IPS report therefore recommends:

• Introducing targetted interventions that reach the LMS as they have specific needs and characteristics which are difficult to address through general interventions.

• Continuing price increases through tobacco taxation as a key policy intervention.

• Implementing the proposed ban on single stick cigarette sales without any further delay.

• Responding to unmet demand for smoking cessation through support programmes.

• Carrying out rigorous awareness campaigns that cover all aspects of adverse implications of tobacco smoking including effects of second-hand and third-hand smoking.

The report is authored by Sunimalee Madurawala, Chathurga Karunanayake and Chamini Thilanka. The study was funded by Cancer Research UK and field work was facilitated by the Alcohol and Drug Information Centre (ADIC).

Access the full report here:

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Galadari Colombo awarded ‘SLIM People’s Hotel Brand of the Year 2021’



The Galadari Colombo was given a thumbs up from the people as the People’s Hotel Brand of the Year for the second time running at the recently concluded SLIM (Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing) People’s Awards 2021.

The uniqueness of the SLIM People’s Awards is the fact that it is awarded by the public which shows the popular choice of the Sri Lankan people.

This is the 15th successful running of the much-anticipated event conducted by SLIM in association with Nielsen which is globally renowned for its measurement and consumer insights.

Having stood the test time of time in the hospitality industry for more than 3 decades the Galadari Colombo is hopeful to remain in the hearts of its people as a brand that is trustworthy and dedicated to service.



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Expatriates’ organization painting competition for Sri Lankan children from care homes highlights close India-Sri Lanka ties



Celebrating 75 years of India’s independence in Sri Lanka, Sri Lankan children from care homes converged in Colombo from all across Sri Lanka over 10-11 April 2021 for the final round of the nationwide painting competition organized by Colombo Expatriates Cultural Association (CECA) – a voluntary organization of expatriates consisting of mainly Indians – with support of the High Commission of India, Ministry of Education of government of Sri Lanka and several other partners.

Prof. G.L Peiris, Minister of Education was the Chief Guest and Gopal Baglay, High Commissioner of India was the Guest of Honour at the final round. Several other dignitaries including State Minister Piyal Nishantha were also present. The dignitaries lauded the effort as a shining example of strong people-to-people ties between India and Sri Lanka and stressed the enormous significance of the enriching experience for the children.

The competition was held in three categories – Sub Junior, Junior and Senior. The first round of the competition had seen enthusiastic participation of 4,375 students from child care homes across Sri Lanka. Contestants from all provinces who had produced sixty best paintings were invited along with one care-giver for the final round held in Colombo on April 10 at Hotel Taj Samudra. While top three winners in all the three categories were awarded SLR 100,000, SLR 75,000 and SLR 50,000 respectively in addition to various other gifts, certificates and medals, all the 60 finalists received cash awards, desktop computers, and other gifts contributed by various sponsors.

The event also formed part of ‘India @ 75’ celebrations in Sri Lanka which comprise events and activities in the run up to completion of 75 years of India’s Independence in August 2022. Prime Minister of India Shri Narendra Modi had launched these celebrations in India on March 12 2021, 75 weeks before the 75th Anniversary of Independence. In Sri Lanka, formal launch of these celebrations had taken place on April 9 2021 with the inauguration of ‘India Corner’ at the Nagananda Institute for Buddhist Studies.

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Chrissworld to raise Rs. 56.25 million through IPO



By Hiran H.Senewiratne 

Chrissworld Ltd. (CWL), an SME company  engaged in the provision of third-party logistics (3PL) services, is gearing to raise up to Rs. 56.25 million via an initial public offering (IPO) on the Colombo Stock Exchange, sources said.

The company plans to offer 7,500,000 Ordinary Voting Shares for subscription at Rs. 7.50 per share. The subscription will open on April 27, with Atara Capital Partners representing the company as managers to the issue.

Meanwhile, the CSE noted in a statement that it has approved an application submitted by Chrissworld Ltd. for the listing of its Ordinary Voting Shares by way of an offer for subscription on the Empower Board of the CSE.

The company,  starting off with Rs. 6 million capital in 2019, expanded its capital to Rs. 22.5 million and projects to obtain Rs. 79 million after the IPO.

Chrissworld will be earmarking milestones with the IPO as the first to be listed on the Empower Board, CSE’s newest listing platform, dedicated to SMEs. Further, Central Depository Systems (Pvt.) Ltd., a subsidiary company of CSE, will step in for the first time as the registrar to the issue.

Amid those developments the CSE  started  on a bullish note yesterday and during the latter part of the day with heavy retail investor participation the CSE witnessed a bullish trend. It is said that manufacturing sector counters became the most popular stocks during the day. Notable price appreciation was reported in Hayleys Group, Royal Ceramic Group and  Distilleries.    

Both indices moved upwards. The All Share Price Index went up by 100.10 points and S and P SL20 rose by 49.18 points. Turnover stood at Rs. 3.51 billion with a crossing. The crossing was reported in JKH, which crossed 1.32 million shares to the tune of Rs. 199.3 million and its share price was Rs. 151.

In the retail market, companies that mainly contributed to the turnover were; Royal Ceramic Rs. 511.2 million (1.46 million shares traded), Expolanka Holdings Rs. 359.9 million (4.5 million shares traded),  Hayleys Group Rs. 359.9 million (4.5 million shares traded), Dipped Products Rs. 321 million (5.5 million shares traded), JKH Rs. 290 million (1.9 million shares traded), and Haycarb Rs. 177 million (1.5 million shares traded). During the day 87.8 million share volumes changed hands in 23900 transactions.

Hayleys shares appreciated by Rs. 6 or eight percent. Its shares started trading at Rs. 75.90 and at the end of the day they moved to Rs. 82. Royal Ceramic shares appreciated by Rs. 13.5 or nine percent. Its shares started trading at Rs. 328.25 and at the end of the day they moved to Rs. 358.75. Expolanka shares appreciated by Rs. 2.70 or five percent. Its shares  started trading at Rs. 49.70 and at the end of the day they shot up to Rs. 52.40 and Distilleries shares appreciated by 70 cent or 3 percent from Rs. 20.20 to Rs. 20.90  

Sri Lanka’s rupee quoted steady at 202.00/203 to the one month US dollar Monday, while gilt yields remained unchanged, dealers said.

The rupee last closed in the one-week forward market at 202/203 to the US dollar on Friday. Sri Lanka markets were dull as seasonal bliss kicks in.


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