• June 12, 2024

Tobacco smoking ban working

Smoking in China photo
Photo by kevinpoh

Although Beijing residents accustomed to smoky restaurants and bars doubted that the city’s latest ban on tobacco smoking would have any effect, it’s been a slow but steady success, according to a story by Kyle Mullin for The Beijinger.

No doubt the residents were influenced by the many commentators who, after the announcement of the public-places smoking ban, predicted non-compliance on a grand scale.

However, if they had looked around the world, they would have seen that smokers are generally law abiding – much more so than are drivers, for instance – and that smoking bans, where properly enforced, have been complied with – unlike speed limits.

And this has been the case in Beijing where most food and beverage venues have reported good compliance with the rules.

Not only that; state media recently reported that 200,000 fewer Beijingers are lighting up these days than used to be the case. Based on findings jointly released at the end of 2016 by the Beijing Patriotic Health Campaign Committee and the Beijing Municipal Health Commission, the percentage of local adult smokers has gone down from 23.4 percent in 2014 to 22.3 percent this year.

Stricter smoking restrictions were announced in 2014, and put into effect citywide in 2015, barring anyone from smoking at eateries and workplaces, on public transport and at other public places.