Brits will stub out their last cigarettes by 2030 – after being encouraged to either quit or move to vaping, it was reported last night.
And tobacco giants will be forced to help smokers make the switch instead of cash-strapped local health services, according to plans seen by the Daily Mail.
Cigarette packets – already plastered in health warnings and graphic images – will also be stuffed with a leaflets giving advice on how to quit, ministers will say.
The new health plans – to be announced next week – will coincide with a crackdown on illegal black market cigs.
It will all form a pledge to make the UK smoke-free by 2030 being unveiled by Health Secretary Matt Hancock.
‘Finish The Job’
Smoking rates have halved in 35 years – with fewer than one in six adults now taking up the habit.
But health chiefs now want to “finish the job” by ridding the country of smoking for good.
The Government plans reportedly say: “The gains in tobacco control have been hard-won, and there’s still much to do.
“For the 15 per cent of adults who are not yet smoke-free, smoking is the leading cause of ill-health and early death, and a major cause of inequalities.
“That’s why the Government wants to finish the job.”
Health bosses admit rates are still “stubbornly high” among groups like manual workers and the LGBT community.
But Britain overall currently has the second-lowest smoking rates in Europe after Sweden.
Figures from 2017 show that 14.9 per cent of UK adults smoke – down from 19.8 per cent in 2011.
The Government already wants to see rates down to just 12 per cent by 2022.
A ban on TV ads for cigarettes came into effect in 1965, while all printed advertising was banned in 2003.
Tobacco firms were banned from sports sponsorship in 2005 – two years before the public smoking ban.
Plain packaging became mandatory in 2016 – while taxes on tobacco have continued to rocket.