Australia has the lowest rate of smoking in the world

Australia has the lowest rate of smoking in the world, according to a new Australian Institute of Health and Welfare study on Statistics in Drug Use in Australia 2004.

The report found that the number of Australians over the age of 14 who smoke has fallen to 17.4%, down from 25% in 1993.

The study also found that the pattern of alcohol use has remained relatively unchanged over the period from 1991 to 2004 with Australians now ranking 23rd of OECD countries for alcohol consumption.

11% of people had recently used marijuana which is the lowest level of use in the 13 years.

The only illicit drug to show an increase in consumption was ecstasy, now used by 3.4% of the population. 7% of 12 - 24 year olds had used ecstacy and meth-amphetamines in the last 12 months, with the highest levels of use being by 20 - 24 year olds.

The report Statistics on Drug use in Australia 2004.

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