London (CNN)Just one in 10 English people will smoke cigarettes in five years and Britain could be a smoke-free society by 2030, according to Public Health England (PHE).
The forecasts were made after 400,000 people gave up smoking in England last year, leaving 6.1 million smokers -- or 14.9% of the population in the country, according to the Office for National Statistics. That's down from a 15.5% rate the previous year and a 19.8% level in 2011
PHE predicted that between 8.5% and 11.7% of people will smoke in 2023 if current trends continue.
The body's chief executive, Duncan Selbie, urged the National Health Service (NHS) to commit to the goal of making Britain effectively smoke-free by 2030 -- meaning that less than 5% of the population would smoke -- at the annual NHS Expo event earlier this month.
The figures suggest that the country could be on track to achieve