China’s anti-smoking campaign made significant progress in 2014 because relevant legislation was brought in at both the national and local levels, according to a China Daily story.
Health experts were said to have agreed during a health forum held at Kunming, Yunnan province, that the country’s growing emphasis on the rule of law had advanced tobacco control legislation, though the implementation of the laws and regulations was still subject to obstacles.
Li Xiaoliang, director of the Pioneers for Health Consultancy Center in Yunnan, said that since China had ratified the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control in 2005, the Chinese government and grassroots organizations had joined hands to promote the anti-smoking cause.
However, tobacco control legislation still lacked solid public support because a large number of the country’s smokers and passive smokers were not fully aware of the damage tobacco caused to health and social development, Li added.
In January 2014, a circular issued by the government called on officials to take a lead in the campaign by not smoking in public.
In November, the Beijing municipal legislature passed an anti-smoking bill aiming to ban smoking in all indoor public places and workplaces, and on public transport. The bill is scheduled to take effect in June.
And also in November, China’s State Council’s legislative affairs office released a draft regulation for public comment.
The regulation would ban smoking in indoor public places and outdoor spaces, including schools and hospitals; it would ban all forms of tobacco advertising, sponsorship and promotion; and it would prohibit smoking scenes involving minors in films and on television.