The result, as previously reported here, is now official...
More smokers now than before 2004 banMore people are smoking now than before the ban on smoking in public places was introduced six years ago, the Dáil has heard.
Minister of State for Health Áine Brady pointed to figures showing that 29 per cent of the population smoked despite the ban, the abolition of packs of fewer than 20 cigarettes, the ending of in-store displays and advertising, and the cost of cigarettes, which at €8.55 a pack “are the highest in the world”.
Although, to be fair, Ireland's slavish devotion to tobacco control policies has had some effect:
Sinn Féin health spokesman Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin described tobacco smuggling as a “huge and growing problem”
And let's not forget all those pub closures. All in all, a colossal disaster for all concerned except, perhaps, for the tobacco industry. I've said it before and I'll say it again. It's a damn good job it's not a results-driven business.