Our Government's Smoke-Free goal is that by 2025 less than five percent of New Zealanders will be smokers. This was established in March 2011 in response to the recommendations of a landmark Parliamentary inquiry by the Māori Affairs select committee.
Smoking rates are decreasing, but there are still significant inequities for Māori, Pacific peoples and those living in socioeconomically deprived areas.
The current smoking rate of New Zealand adults is 13.4 percent in 2019/2020, which has decreased from 16.6 percent in 2014/15 15 and from 18.2 percent in 2011/12. The current Māori smoking rate is 31.4% in 2019/20, which has decreased from 38.1% in 2015/15, and 40.2 percent in 2011/12.
Māori smoking rates remain much higher than those for the overall population. Māori women have New Zealand’s highest smoking rates, at 32%. Māori men also have a disproportionably higher current smoking rate of 25% (Ministry of Health 2020).