Post D: Influence of cultural impacts towards tobacco use.

Due to the different cultural influences in Indonesia, the country has grown to have the highest smoking rate in the world! Unfortunately, the government undermines the effects of tobacco in different means such as advertisements and sponsorships which creates a lack of knowledge and understanding from the user. Currently, Indonesia is referred to as “the tobacco industry’s Disneyland” (Webster, 2019), and without any government regulations, it is only developing a greater influence on society negatively. The impacts go as far as to drain individuals financially, not only impacting themselves, but their families as well reinforced in, “Then I came to realise that men with small incomes who smoke often deprive their families of basic needs” (Webster, 2019). It is devastating to consider the negative impact that tobacco will have towards the youth of Indonesia, as they have now become the target market for the campaigns, setting them up with the most tragic health impacts long term. This is reinforced due to the death rate as tobacco kills over 225,720 people each year in Indonesia. 

Map of Indonesia with statistics. 

The government however, refuses to see the ongoing and detrimental health effects as they are blinded by the financial benefits for the country as they are the largest tobacco producers in the world. As shown in the map below, we learn that there are over 57 million smokers, men making up 63 percent of this group and women being 5 percent. The culture in Yogyakarta in particular is just as astounding as the ads are displayed regularly in order to promote this deadly habit as a norm and a form of portraying and encouraging masculinity to the public. Dr. Richard Hurt, director of the Nicotine Dependence Research Program states that “Because Indonesians are Islamic, alcohol is less of a curse than in many countries,” he explains. “Unfortunately, though, tobacco addiction inflicts huge damage on household incomes and health.” This is an additional cultural influence which may have significant impact towards the number of users within Indonesia as this is their form of comfort in tobacco. In order to prevent it, the government are required to successfully inform people of the terrible and ongoing impacts of tobacco on their own lives financially and health wise.

References:

H.T.F Putra, A.W.M Suhartini, 2015, ‘The Competitiveness Analysis Of Indonesia’s Tobacco In The International Market’, Volume XXVI, Issue 0853-5167, pp. 57-60.

Webster, P.C. 2013, ‘Indonesia: The tobacco industry’s “Disneyland’: CMAJ CMAJ”, Canadian Medical Association.Journal, vol. 185, no. 2, pp. E97-8.

World Health Organisation, 2018, Factsheet Indonesia 2018, Tobacco Use In Indonesia, Apps, South East Asia, viewed 22nd of November 2019, <https://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/handle/10665/272673/wntd_2018_indonesia_fs.pdf?sequence=1>.

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