By the end of last year, 23.3 percent of the residents of Shanghai, China, aged 15-69, were tobacco smokers, down from 26.9 percent in 2010, according to a story in The Shanghai Daily citing the Shanghai Health and Family Planning Commission’s annual report.
The survey, the results of which were published yesterday, found that 46.8 percent of men and 2.0 percent of women smoked.
A total ban on smoking in indoor public places came into force across the city yesterday.
Shanghai has restricted public smoking since 2010, but the original regulation included bans in only a limited number of places, such as schools and libraries.
The new regulation extends the bans to all indoor public places and some outdoor ones.
The survey, which interviewed 34,400 people in 1,796 public place, found that 78 percent of people were aware of the new tobacco-smoking regulations, and that 95 percent supported them and pledged to observe them.
Commission chief Wu Jinglei said the data showed the city had come a long way since the limited ban was introduced in 2010, but that there were still serious challenges.
The authorities are conducting widespread inspections, focusing on places where smoking is popular, and their week-long crackdowns will continue into April and May. Thousands of volunteers around the city are reporting violations.
Offenders are liable to fines of up to 200 yuan (U$30) and restaurant owners can be fined up to 20,000 yuan for failing to enforce the ban.