With the 2022 Winter Olympics on the horizon, Beijing has joined forces with Tianjin and Zhangjiakou in hopes to carry on its legacy of the smoke-free regulations from the 2008 Summer Olympics. The capital city has always been on the forefront of tackling China’s smoking problem by introducing a smoking ban to the city in June of 2015. From there, the anti-smoking movement has spread to other major cities in China.
READ MORE: China to Issue Nationwide Public Smoking Ban
According to China Daily, during an event promoting the 2022 Olympics last May, Duan Jiali, the director of the tobacco-control department of the Beijing Center for Disease Prevention and Control, was quoted saying that there would be a "total ban on smoking at Olympic and Paralympic venues" which would include bars and restaurants across the venue grounds.
She also added that the smoke-free policy would be promoted by broadcasting and further execution of the ban would be provided through multi-level education on tobacco control, strict supervision, law enforcement and a smoke-free environment construction process, as reported by China Daily.
The influential event would also be the perfect opportunity to influence anti-smoking legislation throughout the Hebei province. So far, only one city in the province – Tangshan – has such a regulation in place.
In China, the biggest tobacco producer and consumer nation in the world, health officials strive for effective smoking regulations. Even in cities where an indoor-smoking ban has been issued, some restaurants, bars and clubs fail to follow through. This is one of the driving factors as to why Beijing’s disease prevention and control center has started to propose technical solutions to strengthen the monitoring and assessment of smoke-free environments.
The smoking bans across the country have had a powerful effect since their installment, leading to violators being reported via WeChat by users and even the removal of the smoking emoji from Chinese social media.
[Top image via Flickr]