Or so they Say.
Smoking could “virtually disappear” in Britain within half a century, according to research by Citigroup.
With quitting smoking on top of many a list of new year's resolutions, the broker has considered what a decline in smoking means for the tobacco industry.
The habit has been on the wane since the 1960s, when just over half of adults in Britain smoked. With people becoming more conscious of the health risks associated with smoking and the introduction of the smoking ban in 2007, that figure had dropped to a fifth by 2008.
“The percentage of smokers is declining across the developed world, and the declines are more or less in a straight line in most markets,” said analysts.
“If these trends continue, then by 2050, many important tobacco markets will have gone to zero smoking.”
But Citigroup stressed that these were “extremely long-term” trends and did not justify any action as yet, adding that pricing increases will continue to drive profit growth for tobacco companies until about 2020.