Guangzhou, China - non-smoking Asian Games - can it happen??

June 22, 2009 - The 16th Annual Asian Games will be held in Guangzhou, China November 11 to November 27, 2010. Guangzhou (Canton) is the capital and the political, economic, and cultural center of Guangdong Province. (As of the 2000 census, the city has a population of 6 million, and a metropolitan population of roughly 8.5 million making it the third most populous metropolitan area in mainland China. It is located about 120 km (75 miles) northwest of Hong Kong.)

"A proposal has been submitted to accelerate the implementation of the new regulation and create the environment for a non-smoking Asian Games in 2010," said Su Jinzhong, deputy director of the standing committee of the municipal people's congress and one of the deputies who submitted the proposal.

The law bans smoking in kindergartens, cinemas, auditoriums and meeting rooms of government departments, State enterprises and public institutions, as well as places where there are pregnant women, while limiting smoking in bars, dance halls and game rooms.

Those who break the law will be warned. Anyone continuing to smoke will be fined between 100 yuan (14.63USD) and 150 yuan (21.95USD). And those who sell cigarettes on May 31, world non-smoking day, will be fined 1,000 yuan (146.31USD) to 3,000 yuan (483.92USD).

Cheng Yuehua, a lawyer in Guangzhou, said: "However, the feasibility of implementing the regulation also has to be taken into account." Cheng said working out who will enforce the regulation, how to define a smoker, how to judge the age of a cigarette buyer are among the issues that should be considered.

Many smokers suggest smoking areas should be set up. "I know smoking is not good for my health; however, it is not easy to get rid of the addiction so quickly," said Chen Ge, a local citizen who has smoked for at least a decade.

It would be great if these people can get this done. We'll have to wait and see..

More on the 16th Annual Asian Games in Guangzhou, China.

Reference: No smoking near mothers-to-be, People's Daily Online, 6/11/2009.

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