THE PRICE of tobacco products fell in developing countries from 1990-2000, according to the World Health Organisation, which has concluded that they are now "sometimes even cheaper than bread or rice." By contrast, the WHO tobacco price trends study assessing more than 80 countries concluded that cigarettes have become more expensive in most industrialised countries, such as Norway, Australia and Hong Kong. Poor countries with falling tobacco costs included Vietnam, Costa Rica, and the Ivory Coast.

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