Tobacco Hazards Prevention Act implemented in Taiwan

Taiwan’s health authorities implemented - prohibition on smoking at indoor public areas. It includes hotels, restaurants, bars, taxis, internet cafes, airports, bus stops and railway stations. They want to make Taiwan a smoke free island.

Under this new law local air carriers are banned from freely selling cigarettes to passengers during flights and smoking rooms at airport also closed. If individuals are caught violating this law, they could be fined up to NT$10,000 and for businesses it’s up to NT$50,000

Taipei City's Department of Health (DOH) director Mr Allen Chu said, “Although the majority of the businesses in the area have followed the new rules but some hotels didn’t put no-smoking signs. So they are warned and will be checked again.”

Taipei city government said they had found 5 out of 2,740 public facilities, who didn’t post anti-smoking signs at the entrance, so they were fined of up to 50,000 Taiwan dollars. A hot pot restaurant is given 3 days to give a reasonable explanation for not posting a no-smoking sign on its premises otherwise fined 10,000 Taiwan dollars.

The “health tax” doubled to 500 Taiwan dollars for every 1,000 cigarettes and each kilogram of tobacco and cigars under this law. High prices will help to reduce smoking and related diseases because lung cancer is a leading cause of death in Taiwan.

According to National Health Research Institute, there are 5 million smokers and around 20,000 people die every year due to smoking and by 2020 it may go up to 67,000 people yearly.