Tobacco Asia

Volume 18, Number 4

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72 tobaccoasia CLOSING PAGES 卷尾新闻 Brazil World's oldest man also world's oldest smoker An interesting claim recently emerged from a retirement home in Vila Vicentina, Brazil: apparently, it is also the home of Jose Aguinelo dos Santos, the oldest living person on earth at the ripe old age of 126 years old. Reportedly, this childless bachelor is a long-time, pack-a-day smoker, but has no known health problems and even walks without a stick. According to the Gerontology Research Group, an international organization which tracks and verifies "Supercentenarians" – people who have lived to be older than 110 – the oldest verified living person is currently Misao Okawa from Japan who is 116 years old. Jose dos Santos, however, would not only be remarkable for his age, also for the fact that only two of the 74 verified supercentenarians on the list are men. Members of the staff at the retire- ment home say that Senior dos Santos, who is one of their most coherent residents, has documents that indicate that his birth date was July 7, 1888. Brazilian news service G1 first published the photos of dos Santos's documentation and details of his story. Dos Santos may have been born on a slave compound that he still vividly remembers. According to the staff at the Vila Vicentina, he was one of six children of freed Afro-Brazilian slaves living in a community of former slaves. He spent his life working on a coffee plantation in the Sao Paolo town of Bauru. Mariana Silva, a psychologist at the Vila Vicentina home, told the Telegraph that "he doesn't have high cholesterol, diabetes, or high blood pressure. The only medicine he takes are vitamins and a tablet to give him an appetite, which you can lose with old age." Indonesia Gudang Garam profits up According to a report by Maybank Kim Eng, Indonesia's second-biggest cigarette producer by market value, PT Gudang Garam Tbk, is reporting a 23% rise in first-half net profit to IDR2.7 trillion (US$232.9 million) – from IDR2.2 trillion over the same period last year. The jump in profit for the six months that ended in June is attributed to higher sales in the run-up to the country's presiden- tial elections. The report says that another factor is a relatively recent minimum wage increase over the last two years. Maybank stated that Gudang Garam is the leading player in the machine-rolled cigarette market and is sure to benefit from the industry's growth, with a "buy" rating and a IDR65,000 rupiah target price on the stock. After the news was reported, the company's shares rose 2.2% to IDR54,325, outperforming the Jakarta stock exchange, which fell 0.4%. South Africa Jet fuel from tobacco South African Airways (SAA) will be collaborating with Boeing to make sustainable aviation bio-fuel from a new type of modified tobacco plant. The hybrid plant, known as "solaris" is a nicotine-free alternative to traditional tobacco. Initial plans call for the oil from the the plant's seeds to be converted into jet fuel, but as more sophisticated technolo- gies develop, aviation bio-fuel will also be produced from the rest of the the plant. According to a press release published by Boeing, test farming has already started in South Africa and production of the bio-fuel is expected to be implemented in the next few years. Ian Cruickshank, a specialist in the area of environmental affairs with the SAA group, stated that "by using hybrid tobacco, we can leverage knowledge of tobacco growers in South Africa to grow a marketable bio-fuel crop without encouraging smoking." Egypt Eastern up 17% Eastern Co., Egypt's leading cigarette maker, posted a 17.1% increase in net profit in the year ending on June 30. The increase is attributed to strong sales, which were up by 13% to 6.2 billion Egyptian pounds (US$867 million). Eastern's full-year sales boost helped the company to reach net profit of 883.2 million pounds, up from 754.4 million pounds a year earlier. The company has a monopoly on cigarette production in Egypt, a country with a population of 86 million people. Eastern now faces a government- imposed increase in taxes on cigarettes. The Egyptian government recently raised the sales tax on cigarettes by up to 120% as part of a number of measures to curb the budget deficit and restructure the economy. South Korea Cig butts for gadgets A team of South Korean scientists have found a way to convert cigarette butts into a high-performing material that could be used in computers, handheld devices, electrical vehicles, and wind turbines to store energy. The research, published in journal Nanotechnology, shows the material's superior performance compared to commercially available carbon, and also had a higher amount of storage compared to graphene and carbon nanotubes. The material has the potential to be used as a coating for the electrodes of supercapacitors – electrochemical compo- nents that can store extremely large amounts of electrical energy. The research- ers showed that the cellulose acetate fibres that mostly comprise cigarette filters could be transformed into a carbon-based material using simple burning technique, as a result, increasing its performance as a supercapacitive material. "Our study has shown that used cigarette filters can be transformed into a high-performing carbon-based material using a simple one-step process, which simultaneously offers a green solution to meeting the energy demands of society," said Professor Jongheop Yi from Seoul National University, co-author of the study. It is estimated that as many as 5.6 trillion cigarette butts (nearly 766 571 metric tons), are deposited into the environment worldwide every year, and this research raises hopes that the material can offering a solution to the growing environmental problem caused by used cigarette filters. Russia Multinationals picketed in Russia According to an ITAR-TASS Russian

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