|Tianjin’s 13 million people will benefit from smoking ban|
Tianjin, a Chinese city of 13 million where the adult smoking rate is 27.2%, has passed a regulation to ban smoking in workplaces and indoor public places. It is the second city participating in China’s Seven Cities project to achieve this goal.
The Tianjin Smoking Control Regulation was passed with unanimous support from legislators during the Tianjin People's Congress on 28 March. The law will take effect on World No Tobacco Day, 31 May 2012.
Tianjin’s final regulation is an improvement on the current law, and another progressive move towards tobacco control implementation in mainland China. The smoking ban will cover indoor public places and workplaces, including all government office buildings. Restaurants, discotheques and massage parlours will be required to either set up separately ventilated smoking rooms or establish 100% smokefree indoor environments.
Tianjin has done much to prepare for the upcoming implementation of the smokefree law, even before it passed. Public service announcements have been running on local television for the past two years explaining the adverse health effects of exposure to second-hand smoke. Taxis and the police service office buildings in Nankai District of the city have also gone smokefree during this period.
Tianjin and the northeastern city of Harbin have now both passed smokefree laws. Both cities are participants in the Seven Cities project supported by The Union through grants from the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use. The goal is to advance tobacco control in seven cities with an average population of 10 million, and thus influence the promotion of local and national tobacco control laws in China, a country with some 300 million smokers.