History of Smokefree Aotearoa 2025

Our Government's Smokefree 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.

Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan 

The Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan was launched on Thursday 9 December 2021.

The culmination of many years of hard mahi, the plan will accelerate our progress towards a smokefree future and tackle the harm smoked tobacco products cause the people of New Zealand.  

You’ll find a copy of the Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan, education tools, the Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS), the summary of submissions and other key documents on the Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan page.  

Developing the Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan  

A decade has passed since New Zealand adopted the Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 goal. To meet our smokefree 2025 goal significant smoking related inequities must be eliminated. Smoking rates and smoking related harm must be reduced among Māori, Pacific peoples and those living in Aotearoa’s most disadvantaged communities.

In April 2021 we released a document: "Proposals for a Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 Action Plan". A public consultation was released from April 2021 to 31 May 2021 to gather feedback on the policies to achieve the Smokefree 2025 goal.

We heard from over 5,200 groups and individuals representing diverse populations and interests. The submissions have been analysed and published, and a summary of submissions document has been published.

Progress to Smokefree 2025

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).

View the most recent smoking data:

Graph showing decreasing prevalence of smoking in NZ from 1984 to 2020, marked with events like first tobacco control programme in 1984, graphic health warnings introduced in 2018, and vaping products regulated in 2020(Click to enlarge this graph)

In this section

  • The Ministry of Health has selected an evaluation provider to undertake an 'Evaluation of the tobacco excise increases as a contributor to Smokefree 2025'. Read more
Back to top