China & tobacco : one third of the world’s cigarettes smokers

 

There are some important trends in China’s cigarette market. One of the trends is a growing concern about health issues related to smoking, which resulted in a slowing growth in the consomption. In the meantime, the market is becoming more mature with higher growth in value. The smokers are switching to better quality brands. There is generally, as in all the market segments in China, be it real estate or any other, a conscience of product quality which is become really important.

A regulated market

There is one regulation authority on this market, called the STMA. This agency defines the standards and health regulations. This agency is as well responsible for the control of imports with a protective mission for the Chinese domestic manufacturers but there is another consequence to this control: a trend to concentration regarding the whole Chinese tobacco industry.

Growth prospects

The annual growth rate of this market is expected to be 1% over the period 2012-2017, wich is a slowing down comapred with previous periods. The unknown factor in the adjudtments that should be done to this trend is the health awareness of Chinese people: more and more people limit their consumption or quit smoking. This might be an important factor about the future of this market.

The regulation is evolving as well with the prohibition, since 2013, of cigarettes above 11 mg tar. This is the end of very strong Chinese cigarettes.

The largest cigarette market in the world

What is at stake with the Chinese cigarette market is a huge sum of money: with 350 million smokers, China counts more than one third of the people smoking cigarettes in the world. This is an operational industry and sign that things are changing regarding health awareness, a debate has arisen on the Chinese web about cigarette testing.

People paid to smoke cigarettes

There is a real job in China: cigarete smoker. A person can be paid to test the taste and effects of cigarettes. The Global Times has recently issued an article about a professiionnal cigarette smoker who is currently smoking around 30 cigarettes a day. The job description: smoke cigarettes and evaluate the taste, the bitterness, the irritating effects of a new kind of cigarette. Women, who thought to be are more sensible to subtelties are “privileged” for this work, but to do it successfully, they have to give up perfume and makeup. The woman interviewed says she loves the job and sees no health effects on her or her workmates. Sign of the times: the Global Times temperates this judgement, and the artcicle has provoked a small debate among Chinese people on the web. Indeed, the chage is perceptible, and less and less people are smoking within their apartments, leaving air pollution outside.

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