Unreported World

Indonesia's Tobacco Children

Episode 2 Indonesia's Tobacco Children



Indonesia is smoking itself to death. There are 90 million smokers in the country, many of them children as young as six. Reporter Jonathan Miller finds one boy who started smoking super-strength fags aged two. The reason for the epidemic is clear: everywhere you look there are slick, exciting adverts for cigarettes – on billboards and on TV – while tobacco firms aggressively target younger consumers by sponsoring high-profile rock music and sports events.

Tobacco is crucial to the Indonesian economy so there’s no government campaign warning of health risks. Even worse, they seem disinclined to do anything to stop the tobacco giants “milking a cash cow”.


Reporter Jonathan Miller and director James Brabazon travel to Indonesia, the world's fastest-growing tobacco market. Aggressively targeted by global cigarette companies and with minimal controls on advertising, the country is in the grip of a smoking epidemic and the proportion of child smokers is rising dramatically.