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The Chinese regime is delaying its smoking ban in public places until May 1st, but officials believe it could take decades before any progress is made.
The ban will apply to restaurants, theaters, hotels, parks and museums, but not offices.
A deadline set for January 9 this year—when China signed the World Trade Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control—passed without action.
Bans were also attempted during the Shanghai World Expo and the Beijing Olympics, but they were ignored and only a few fines were issued.
Smoking is widely entrenched in Chinese society with about 300 million smokers. People regularly smoke on public transport, domestic flights and medical waiting rooms.
This month, legislator Sun Shiyun told the Shanghai Daily it could take 50 years to realize the goal of smoke-free public venues.
Others say the massive revenue from state-owned tobacco companies is a major disincentive for top-down action.