The Indonesian Cancer Foundation welcomes and lauds the Indonesian Government for its plan to increase cigarette tax in the near future
Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Indonesian Cancer Foundation (YKI) has voiced its support to the government's agenda to increase cigarette tax that Finance Minister Sri Mulyani will put into effect from January 1, 2022.

Chairman of YKI, Aru Wisaksono Sudoyo, lauded the finance ministry's measure, as it can reduce the likelihood of new cases of cancer.

"The Indonesian Cancer Foundation welcomes and lauds the Indonesian Government for its plan to increase cigarette tax in the near future. The increase in cigarette tax is expected to lower the consumption of cigarettes and reduce the likelihood of new cases of cancer caused by smoking," Sudoyo said in his statement here on Friday.

According to the GLOBOCAN data in 2020, some 397 thousand new cases of cancer were recorded in Indonesia. In addition, 235 thousand deaths were caused due to smoking-triggered cancer.

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Meanwhile, Indonesia is ranked third globally as the country with the highest number of smokers, with a prevalence of 33.8 percent, or about 65.7 million people into the habit of smoking.

Sudoyo noted that it came as no surprise that cancer can arise due to smoking, as cigarettes contain carcinogens that are harmful to the body.

According to Sudoyo, smoking can trigger at least 15 types of cancer: lung cancer, bladder cancer, leukemia, cervical cancer, colorectal cancer, esophageal cancer, pelvic cancer, as well as cause cancer of the kidneys, liver, mouth, throat, pancreas, abdomen, and hypopharynx.

Since smoking is one of the causes of cancer that is preventable, the regulation on smoking should be put in place together, he added.

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"Only through the government's collaborative efforts, such as this cigarette tax hike, and (support from) all components of society, can we reduce the number of new cancer cases in Indonesia," he explained.

Increasing the tax on cigarettes is expected to reduce cigarette consumption in Indonesia and improve the quality of life of society.

"It can also increase state revenue to fund the National Health Insurance (JKN) for the future, especially for cancer treatment, improve the health of communities, lower the burden of sickness and death due to cancer, and other general benefits," he pointed out.

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Translator: Livia K, Kenzu T
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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