Christian Living

chinaconnection 02/11/09

Shanghai Bans Indoor Smoking

The city of Beijing was literally smoking earlier this week, but new smoking restrictions are set to clear the air in Shanghai.  Local public health authorities have banned smoking in all indoor work places in order to clean up the city's air by 2011. 

According to the new regulations, "all places with ceilings and at least three walls will be defined as indoor areas where smoking will be strictly prohibited," making it especially difficult for smokers to find a place to light up.  They're not even having special designated smoking areas, to reduce the impact of second-hand smoke completely.

For a country like China, this ban is a huge blow to smokers.  About twenty five percent of Shanghai residents smoke, and nationwide there are 350 million smokers.  There are also one million smoking-related deaths each year, which explains much of the government intervention.

The 2010 World Expo in Shanghai also has motivated the city to clean up its image. 

Smokers will still be able to smoke in their homes, but this ban marks a huge difference from just a few years ago when citizens were permitted to smoke in places like schools and hospitals.  While there aren't any immediate plans to extend this ban to other cities in China, I probably won't invest in Shanghai cigarette companies any time soon.

Give Now