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Smoking in Israel

Current smoking trends for the overall adult population in Israel show a decrease from 2000 (32%) to 2015 (25%), with a projection to decrease further to 22% by 2025. Women’s smoking prevalence has been declining year by year, from 24% in 2000 to 15% in 2015, and is projected to be around 11.5% by 2025. For men, smoking prevalence has also been decreasing, but more slowly, with 40% being current smokers in 2000, 35% in 2015 and a projection of around 33% by 2025. The WHO published prevalence trend estimates in tobacco smoking, as shown here, in their 2018 2nd edition report, which show slightly different smoking prevalence to the WHO country profiles. Data for the estimates were obtained from WHO databases. The trend lines are projections, not predictions, of future attainment. A projection indicates a likely endpoint if the country maintains its tobacco control efforts at the same level that it has implemented them to date. Therefore the impact of recent interventions could alter the expected endpoint shown in the projection. While the methods of estimation used in the first and second editions of the WHO report are the same, the volume of data available for the second edition is larger i.e. 200 more national surveys. The results presented are therefore more robust.

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March 05, 2024 by

Tobacco Tax Hikes Enacted In Israel

Israel's finance minister approved a tax increase on tobacco products to encourage smoking cessation. The new tax rates result in higher taxes on cigarettes and e-cigarettes. For example, the tax on cigarettes will rise from 270% plus 444.03 shekels per 1,000 cigarettes to 524.50 shekels. E-cigarette taxes will also increase by at least 145%, with an additional cost per milliliter. Unprocessed tobacco and e-cigarette products will face higher purchase taxes. Tobacco used in cigarettes will be taxed at 113.39 shekels per kilogram. The changes took effect at midnight on Sunday until Monday, with further e-cigarette tax increases slated for July 1.

February 15, 2024 by

Smotrich agrees to equal taxation on e-cigs and regular cigarettes

Following pressure from the Knesset Finance Committee, a representative of Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich stated that he is no longer opposed to equalizing taxation on electronic cigarettes (e-cigs) with regular cigarettes. Public health organizations have criticized the Finance Ministry for giving in to tobacco companies and have called for taxation on smoking products to save lives. They sent a letter to the chairman of the Finance Committee, urging the cancellation of tax exemptions on smoking products imported into Israel and cigarettes sold in duty-free shops.

June 01, 2022 by

Knesset stubs out ads for cigarettes in print media

The Knesset passes into law a ban on cigarette and tobacco ads in print media, nearly four years after a blanket ban on such ads in all other spaces.

The law amendment, proposed by Meretz MK Mossi Raz and Joint List MK Ofer Cassif, passed in its second and third readings, with seven in favor and no opposition.

The wide-reaching advertising ban on all mediums other than print currently extends to cigarettes, cigars, hookah products, and papers used to roll cigarettes. It also outlaws advertising for non-tobacco herbal substances used for smoking, as well as e-cigarettes and all affiliated devices.

January 10, 2022 by

Knesset to take new steps against smoking

Knesset Health Committee chairwoman Idit Silman (Yamina) vowed to pass a series of new anti-smoking bills on Monday at a meeting of her committee on the dangers of smoking. 
Silman, who as coalition chairwoman has power to push her bills forward, will propose legislation raising the minimum age for buying cigarettes to 21, banning tobacco company lobbyists from the Knesset and requiring police to enforce current anti-smoking laws instead of local authorities. She will also try to change the status of open porches of apartments to public places so neighbors will not be subject to passive smoke.

September 06, 2021 by

Nicotine Testing of Children Curbs Parents’ Smoking

Parents who smoke harm the health of their own children
Warnings against the dangers of smoking can be read on every cigarette box and in every advertisement for smoking brands. Those who smoke endanger themselves and also those around them, who inevitably become passive smokers. This way, parents who smoke harm the health of their own children. A first-of-its-kind study in Israel by researchers from the Sackler Medical School of Tel Aviv University uncovers alarming data about secondhand smoking by children of smokers: According to the study, nicotine residues were found in the hair samples of 7 out of 10 children who participated. [...]

August 03, 2020 by

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, smoking rate in Israel remains unchanged

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, and the toll the respiratory disease has taken both globally and nationally across Israel, the percentage of Israelis hasn’t lowered since 2018, according to a Health Ministry report on smoking in Israel, released on Sunday.


The study, submitted to the Knesset by the Health Ministry in accordance with the Mandatory report on the Health Damage Caused by Smoking Tobacco Products, found that 20% of the Israeli population smoked some form of a tobacco product in 2019, a rate similar to that of 2018 (19.1%) . The percentage was higher compared to the year 2017 (18.9%), and lower than 2016.

September 26, 2019 by

Israel stubs out flavored tobacco, mulls total ban of e-cigarettes

The Health Ministry on Tuesday said it was weighing a total ban on sales of e-cigarettes, following other countries that have sought to crack down on what has been described as a vaping epidemic.

The ministry said it was imposing an immediate ban on sales of flavored cartridges of oil used in the smoking devices. It was also considering imposing a blanket ban on sales via a temporary injunction, without waiting for the Knesset to pass new regulations.

August 24, 2018 by


The Israeli branch of electronic cigarette company Juul has sent a petition to the High Court of Justice contesting the government’s recent decision to ban the import and sale of Juul devices in Israel. [...] The petition filed by the company asked for an interim injunction to the order, saying that the order selectively targets them and not competitors who make similar products, that the ministry acted to quickly halt Juul sales by violating the company’s business rights, and that Juul was unfairly targeted [...]

August 22, 2018 by

Israel Bans Juul E-Cigarettes Citing 'Grave' Public Health Risk

Israel on Tuesday outlawed the import and sale of e-cigarettes made by Silicon Valley startup Juul Labs, citing public health concerns given their nicotine content. A statement by Israel's Health Ministry said the Juul device was banned because it contains nicotine at a concentration higher than 20 milligrams per milliliter and poses "a grave risk to public health."

January 28, 2018 by


The Foreign Ministry issued a travel alert last Thursday informing Israelis going to Thailand that e-cigarettes are illegal in the country. The alert followed the detention of an elderly Israeli couple last week for possession of e-cigarettes in the Land of Smiles, and a fine of some NIS 4000. They were also threatened with arrest. "“Enjoy your Thailand holiday, but please leave the electronic cigarettes at home. [...]