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Washington, DC
Middle East and North Africa | Yemen, Republic of
2012-06-11T20:57:18Z | 2012-06-11T20:57:18Z | 2007-06

This report, based on a household survey conducted in 2006, discusses options for discouraging qat consumption in Yemen. It draws on a survey-the first representative data collection exercise aimed specifically at assessing the qat consumption phenomena-which confirms that the use of this drug is widespread. Qat is consumed by men, women and children; its use is extremely time consuming; it drains the family budget; has adverse health effects; negatively affects work performance and thus contributes to poverty. Weaning consumers from the qat habit will be difficult, because its production accounts for some 6 percent of GDP and 14 percent of total employment. Qat consumption requires around 10 percent of the household budget of all income groups, which comes at the expense of basic food, education and health. To reduce qat consumption, this note recommends a set of economic and non-economic policy measures. These include: increasing the tax burden; building public awareness; incorporating training on the hazards of qat in the school system; enforcing public policies aimed at discouraging qat consumption (e.g., extension of working hours); closing knowledge gaps and developing viable crop diversification programs.


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