Jakarta: Poor people in Indonesia's capital city Jakarta spend more money on cigarettes than many of their basic needs, a government report has said.

“More than 30 percent of the spending by poor households in the city is for transportation, clothing and shelter. However, there is another factor that contributes to their spending, which is cigarettes,” said city council speaker Ferrial Sofyan.

A survey by the Badan Pusat Statistik (BPS) -- or the Central Statistics Agency -- said cigarettes had become the second most important item of spending for many poor households, after rice.

The city council speaker said spending more on cigarettes meant a reduction in allocation for other more important needs.

It also often resulted in the declining health of family members, therefore leading to additional expenses.

He said laws would need to be strengthened to overcome the problem.

“It is about time we push for the implementation of laws on no-smoking zones,” he said.

According to BPS data, the number of Jakarta residents living in poverty has reached 363,420 -- or 3.75 percent of the city's population.

Jakarta was home to 9.6 million people, according to the 2010 census.

(Agencies)