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China mulls nation-wide smoking ban in public places

(People's Daily Online)    16:13, November 23, 2016
China mulls nation-wide smoking ban in public places

National regulations to control smoking in public places are undergoing review, and are expected to be released before the end of this year, China’s health authority announced on Nov. 22.

Eliminating smoking in public places and reducing secondhand smoke is a near-global goal. It is also an important project for health advancement, said Mao Qunan, an official with the Health and Family Planning Commission. Nearly 20 cities in China have already formulated public smoking bans, Mao added.

Shanghai's People's Congress recently adopted the newly revised regulation to ban smoking in public places, which will take effect on March 1, 2017. According to the regulation, smoking in indoor public spaces, indoor workplaces and public transport vehicles will be prohibited. This measure has been lauded by Margaret Chan, director-general of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Mao noted that using legislation to control smoking is, in and of itself, a form of health promotion. He suggested that non-smokers continue to use legal weapons to maintain smoke-free environments in public places.

The Chinese government has intensified its publicity campaign about tobacco’s negative effects. The government is currently implementing the requirements of the tobacco framework advocated by WHO through legislation and reform of taxes on tobacco products, Mao said. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Bianji)

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