Ban on smoking in public areas in Bulgaria to take effect in 2011, Cabinet says

Restrictions on smoking in public areas, which were introduced through amendments to the Health Act, will take effect at the beginning of 2011, according to a regulation on indoor smoking in public and working places approved by the Cabinet on November 3 2010.

The decision comes several months after the Cabinet suspended a complete ban on smoking in public areas, which had been planned to come into effect in the middle of 2010.

Smoking areas inside restaurants and cafes, commercial and administrative buildings, railroad stations and airports, should be equipped with walls, tight-closing doors and ventilation systems.

A woman smokes a cigarette behind a smoking ban sign in a restaurant-cafe in central Athens, October 18 2010. At the time, businesses around Greece decided to violate a smoking ban and put ashtrays back on tables, allowing customers to smoke inside, despite the law and heavy fines, saying an economic crisis and smoking ban simultaneously were killing business.

A woman smokes a cigarette behind a smoking ban sign in a restaurant-cafe in central Athens, October 18 2010. At the time, businesses around Greece decided to violate a smoking ban and put ashtrays back on tables, allowing customers to smoke inside, despite the law and heavy fines, saying an economic crisis and smoking ban simultaneously were killing business.

The decision on whether to adopt the smoking ban in cafes and restaurants which have areas of up to 50 sq m will be up to the owners. If smoking is allowed, people younger than 18 will not be allowed into the establishment.

Larger establishments will be required to designate separate smoking areas of less than 50 per cent of the total space.

Smoking will not be restricted in night clubs irrespective of the size of the venue.

Owners who do not obey the regulations will be liable to fines from 500 to 10 000 leva.

Source: Dnevnik.bg

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