§ Mr. Simon Hughes
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will estimate the total number of habitual smokers in Scotland by regional and island council area; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Stewart
[holding answer 18 January 1993]: In 1990 —the latest year for which information is available—the general household survey conducted by the Office of Population Censuses and Surveys (OPCS) indicated that 34 per cent. of the Scottish population aged 16 or over were cigarette smokers. Information broken down by region or island council is not available.
Smoking is the single most important contributor to ill-health in Scotland. It is a high priority for health 247W education and last autumn the Health Education Board for Scotland launched major campaigns directed at young people and adults. My right hon. Friend also announced 248W a number of other steps to combat smoking in the policy statement "Scotland's Health—a Challenge To Us All" which he published last July.