Turkey sees record-breaking cigarette consumption in 2019

Turkey saw its highest figures of cigarette consumption to date in 2019, with a total of 119.7 billion cigarettes consumed, state-run Anadolu news agency said on Saturday, citing data provided by the country's health ministry.

Last year's cigarette consumption exceeded the record high figures in 2018, with a total of 118.5 billion cigarettes, and Turkish smokers spent 78 billion liras ($11.4 billion), Anadolu said.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who is a fierce opponent of smoking, has long waged anti-smoking campaigns in Turkey, where 14.5 million adults and 252,000 children use tobacco every day, according to Tobacco Atlas, a leading source on tobacco data.

Meanwhile, Turkey leads the world in taxes levied for cigarettes, which register at up to 87 percent, following a series of hikes to tobacco taxes since the beginning of 2019.