“We believe that as it is currently objectively difficult to implement a total ban on public smoking, establishing independent smoking areas or indoor smoking rooms in public spaces allows civilized smoking,” the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration told Reuters.
China National Tobacco Corp, which shares office spaces and personnel with the regulator, reportedly persuaded officials of the city of Hangzhou to roll back a proposed ban on indoor smoking in public spaces by providing designated areas for smokers, Reuters said, citing an unnamed tobacco control official. The cigarette maker said it had not played a role in influencing the measures.
Some 300 million Chinese smoke and China National Tobacco Corp sells 98 per cent of all tobacco consumed in the country. With sales of CNY 1.1 trillion (EUR 146.7 billion) in 2017, tobacco sales generated between 7 and 11 per cent of tax revenues in that year, Reuters reported.