China puts into place new smoking ban

May 2nd, 2011 - 10:32 pm ICT by BNO News  

BEIJING, CHINA (BNO NEWS) — China on Monday put into place a new smoking ban that will apply to all public indoor spaces including restaurants and bars, the state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

The regulation was introduced as China has the world’s largest smoking population, an estimated 350 million smokers. This amount translates into one of every three smokers on the planet coming from the Asian giant.

China’s health ministry enacted a regulation that will require public business owners to install non-smoking signs, carry out promotional activities to warn people of the dangers of smoking and encourage employees to dissuade customers from smoking.

The regulation also indicated that smoking areas in outdoor locations should not obstruct pedestrian walkways and that cigarette vending machines should be removed from public places.

However, many Chinese people continue smoking indoors as citizens say that the country has a deeply entrenched smoking culture. According to the new law, any violation to the smoking ban will carry a fine of 30,000 Yuan ($4,620) for the owners of the business.

In China, 3,000 people die every day from smoking-related diseases, according to the World Health Organization. Most of the Chinese people are unaware of the health complications due to smoking.

A recent study showed that only 20 percent of the adults in China believe smoking causes cancer, or other health problems. A campaign of public education is also being considered to tackle this issue.

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