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Chilean gov't presents reform bill to modify tobacco law

06-01-2011 11:35 BJT

SANTIAGO, May 31 (Xinhua) -- Chile's Interior Minister Rodrigo Hinzpeter, Health Minister Jaime Manalich and Economy Minister Juan Andres Fontaine on Tuesday announced a reform bill to modify the country's anti-tobacco law.

The announcement was made as the World No Tobacco Day is coming.

With this reform, smoking will be prohibited in public places, including bars, restaurants, night clubs and offices.

The reform also considers to prohibit smoking in places where sports are practiced, no matter indoors or outdoors.

Smokers and the owners of the places where smoking is allowed will be charged by 167 U.S. dollars.

"We will make much more strict progress on the definition of the spaces where people cannot smoke (...) We are going to make all the work places in our country to be 100 percent smoke-free environment," Hinzpeter said.

However, Fernando Borquez, president of the Chilean Night Clubs Association, said this measure was against the clients' freedom.

"We think this is going to affect us deeply, as it had happened before in Spain where the costumers reduced 20 percent," due to a similar law, Borquez said.

Borquez also said that in many occasions they requested a meeting with the health minister to discuss the reforms, but the ministry has never made them an appointment.

Editor:Wang Xiaomei |Source: Xinhua

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