The number of young people smoking in New Zealand has dropped, a new survey shows.
Maori Party co-leader Tariana Turia said she is "delighted" about the youth smoking statistics in the latest survey by anti-smoking lobby group, ASH.
The Year 10 smoking survey shows that the biggest year on year drop in daily smoking was from 16.3% in 2010 to 11.3% last year for Maori girls.
And Maori students had the biggest decline in daily smoking compared to other ethnicities with a change from 14.1% in 2010 to 10.3% in 2011.
"This is an outstanding result and I am so proud to see our rangatahi leading the way," Turia said.
Just over 8% of students are regular smokers (daily, weekly and monthly), falling from 10.0% in 2010.
And 70% of students had never smoked, a rise from 64.3% in 2010.
"This is the biggest year-to-year decline in daily youth smoking since 2003. Smoking may have been a part of our past, but it's not a part of their future," Turia said.
The Year 10 ASH Smoking Survey is conducted annually and is the largest survey of youth smoking in New Zealand.