Post D: Smoking everyday, Smoking everywhere! No age limit – A commonplace activity in Indonesia

Indonesia has historically been a country that has been using narcotic analgesics extensively. Before the introduction of tobacco and opium from Europe in 1600, the most common narcotics used by Indonesians were betel nuts. Because tobacco began to be widely planted by Indonesians. By the end of the 18th century, tobacco had been widely used by Indonesians (Reid 1985). Since then, tobacco plants have brought huge benefits to Indonesia’s local economy, development and agriculture(Batoro& Ekowati 2017).But it also caused Indonesians to be exposed to tobacco from an early age. It can be seen from the survey data that Indonesians smoke a large part of the world where is the top fifth tobacco consuming countries in the world(WHO 2019), and about 200,000 Indonesians die each year from diseases related to smoking(Tuszynski 2010).

In Indonesia, there are no restrictions for tobacco company. Those companies can propagate their product via advertising on television and billboard. Tobacco company in order to achieve their propaganda purpose even sponsors scholarship for the young people, sponsor the sporting and music events(Sukamdi & Wattie 2013). Such as the singer Kelly Clarkson was being sponsored by tobacco company PT Djarum under the name of its cigarette brand LA lights, holding the music events in Jakarta, Indonesia(Washington 2010).

Washington 2010

Since buying and smoking is legal for anyone of any age in Indonesia. So, it led to smoking at every age, including children. According to statistics, about one million children under the age of 16 in Indonesia smoke, and one third of Indonesian children try to smoke before the age of 10(Meyersohn & Harris 2011).Therefore, the number of young smoker is increasing every year. The youngest smoker only two year old, who smokes 40 cigarettes per day(Dave 2018).

Dava 2018

However, the habit of smoking might affect the health with the smoker. According to the country’s backwardness in signing and ratifying the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, Indonesia lacks tobacco control(Nawi Ng, Weinehall& Öhman 2006). In order to reduce the number of young smokers in Indonesia. Indonesia government has adopted many policies. For example smoking is banning in public area including restaurant, hospital and school etc since 2005 in the capital city Jakarta, which the city location in west Java(The Jakarta post 2015). If anyone violates the ban will be subject to heavy fines and the need to be in prison. But after the ban smoking policies has been implementing, smoking are continued in 70% of public places(The Jakarta post 2015).

Hand drawing map – Smoking in Java

References list:

Batoro, J. Ekowati, G. 2017, ‘An Enobotanical Tobacco(Nicotiana tabacum L.) in Indonesia’, Advances in life sciences, scientific & academic publishing, Rosemead, vol. 7, no. 2, pp.26-29.

Dava, D. 2018, Two-year-old boy from Indonesia smokes 40 cigarettes a day, One Pattaya International and local news, viewed 25 November 2019, <>.

Meyersohn, J. Harris, D. 2011, From age 2 to 7: why are children smoking in Indonesia?, ABC News, viewed 25 November, <>.

Nawi Ng, L. Weinehall, A. Öhman. 2006, ‘If I don’t smoke, I’m not a real man’—Indonesian teenage boys’ views about smoking, Health Education Research, vol. 22, no. 6, pp 794–804, viewed 22 November 2019, <>.

Reid, A. 1985, ‘From betel-chewing to tobacco-smoking in Indonesia’, The journal of asian studies, vol.44, p.537.

Sukamdi. Wattie, M. A. 2013, Tobacco use and exposure among children in migrant and non-migrant households in Java, Indonesia, Asian pac migr J. author manuscript, PMC funders group, Europe, vol. 22(3), pp.447-464.

The Jakarta post 2015,10 years after ban, smoking continues in 70% of public places, The Jakarta post, Jakarta, viewed 26 November 2019, <>.

Tuszynski, T. 2010, Smoking children on rise in Indonesia: A glaring example of why businesses need to be regulated, viewed 26 November 2019,<> .

Washington, D. C. 2010, Fan urge Kelly Clarkson to drop tobacco sponsorship, International health group, Campaign for tobacco-free kids, viewed 23 November 2019, <>.

World Health Organization(WHO) 2019, Report on Global tobacco epidemic, WHO, viewed 23 November 2019,< >.

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