Smoking Ban in All Restaurants Starts Next Year

      December 12, 2014 10:13

      A smoking ban poster in a restaurant in Songpa, Seoul on Thursday. /News 1

      Smoking will be banned in all restaurants, coffee shops, bakeries, bars and other public facilities.

      At present, restaurants are subject to regulations if they are bigger than 100 sq.m, but smoking is allowed in smaller restaurants. The extended ban will affect all 600,000 restaurants across the country, according to the Ministry of Health and Welfare.

      The ministry said violators will be fined W100,000 (US$1=W1,101). The ban applies to electronic cigarettes as well.

      Sealed-off smoking rooms will be banned in coffee shops, cyber cafes and bars. Failure to comply will result in a W1.7 million fine.

      A health ministry official said, "We will spend a month publicizing the changes and then start cracking down on violators next year."

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