Related News

Home » World

Greece in new bid to cut down on smoking

GREECE, Europe's heaviest smoking nation, will try to kick the habit by banning tobacco in indoor public places from July 1, but many doubt the ban will work.

Greece breaks all European records with more than 40 percent of the population smoking and six out of 10 being exposed to smoking at work, according to a European Union poll.

"We can't take it any more. Where I work there are so many smokers," said 55-year-old Elisavet Vasileiadou.

"I hope the ban will be implemented for the sake of our health, but I think it will be difficult," said Vasileiadou, a shoe-store employee in central Athens. "It's not easy to tame Greeks, they'll find a way out."

Greece has tried to ban smoking in hospitals and offices and requires restaurant and bar owners to designate smoking areas, but the measures have so far been widely ignored.

Smoking-related diseases kill about 20,000 people a year in Greece, costing the country 2.14 billion euros (US$2.97 billion) a year, the Health Ministry said.

The new law will ban smoking indoors in all public or private areas used for working purposes, including airports, taxis and buses.

Restaurant and bar owners of properties of up to 70 square meters can decide whether their business is smoking or non smoking. Others can set up smoking areas.

"I hope it will not work, I'm completely against it," said smoker Nafsika Charalabidou, 39, a translator.

"I may quit, but I want people to smoke anytime they want to."


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend