- Approximately 11 million (29 percent) Ukrainians smoke.
- 50 percent of males and 11 percent of females smoke.
- Smoking prevalence among Ukrainian men is among the highest in the world.
- Among youth (age 13-15), almost one-fourth (24 percent) currently smoke cigarettes.
- Approximately 115,000 Ukrainians die each year from smoking-related diseases.
- Ukrainian male life expectancy is much lower than male life expectancy in Western Europe, in part due to high rates of tobacco consumption.
International tobacco companies dominate the market, holding approximately 90 percent of the cigarette market share in Ukraine. In 2008, Philip Morris International led with 32 percent of market share, followed by Japan Tobacco (25 percent), Imperial Tobacco (20 percent) and British American Tobacco (13 percent). In Ukraine, more than 123 billion cigarettes were sold in 2008.
Ukraine ratified the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control on June 6, 2006.
Tobacco Control Policy Status
Smoke-free environments: Ukraine enacted a new smoke-free law in June 2012. The new law prohibits smoking of tobacco products in restaurants, bars, discos, cultural facilities, government facilities, and buses. This expands the list of 100% SF places, which already had included health care facilities, educational facilities, sports facilities, public transportation, playgrounds, elevators, payphones, and the entrances to apartment buildings. Additionally, for the few places where designated smoking areas are still allowed, the law limits such a space to 10% of the facilities, where before the size allowed was undefined. Areas where designated smoking rooms are still allowed are hotels, dormitories, airports, train stations, and enterprises. The law also clarifies that smoke free includes electronic cigarettes and hookahs.
Advertising, promotion and sponsorship: In March 2012, President Yanukovych signed a bill into law that adds significantly to the list of prohibited advertising, promotion & sponsorship activities of the tobacco industry. The law bans point-of-sale advertising; imposes tighter restrictions on promotional techniques, such as packaging cigarettes with non-tobacco products, brand stretching, and paid sponsorships; places additional restrictions on new advertising media, including internet, mobile, IP, and other technologies; and, puts strict restrictions on tobacco industry contributions to political, artistic, sports, or educational organizations or individuals. Internet advertising and event sponsorship are allowed for advertising targeted to and events for people over age 18 (although other language prohibits any financial support to artistic or sporting events). The brand stretching requirement does not apply to lighters, ashtrays, and other items associated with smoking, and competitions are allowed so long as purchase of tobacco is not a condition of entry.
Warning labels: Current health warnings are text-only and cover 30% of the front and back of the pack. In June 2009, Ukraine passed a packaging and labeling law requiring graphic health warnings on 50% of the front and 50% of the back of the pack. Graphic warnings are scheduled to appear starting September 2012.
Tobacco taxes: Ukraine has passed four tobacco tax increases since September 2008. In May 2009, the tobacco excise tax was increased to approximately 40%-45% of retail price.
Updated: June 2012