Bulgarian PM Announces New Smoking Ban DeadlineHealth | January 25, 2011, Tuesday // 16:19| views
The introduction of a smoking ban has been postponed several times over resistance of the business and their customers. File photo
The option to introduce full smoking ban in establishments in Bulgaria in 2013 is on the table, Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, informs.
Borisov, who is on an official visit to Japan, commented for the media from the Bulgarian Embassy in Tokyo, saying BGN 3 B a year go to health care and smoking is harmful for the health.
Tokyo has a full smoking ban in all outdoor and indoor spaces.
The PM stated he was convinced the ban must apply to even small establishments in Bulgaria.
"I was in the Vitosha mountain last weekend and saw these places where families with young children stop for a cup of tea and there is so much smoke inside, so, yes, we must have a full smoking ban in 2013," Borisov declared, adding the issue will be debated in the Parliament.
The PM pointed out it would be great if the ban can be introduced immediately, but after talking to the business, it was decided to delay it to give the opportunity to owners to recuperate their investments in ventilation and other equipment.
The deadline recommended by the European Commission is 2015.
The agreement has been reached during a meeting between Borisov and representatives of hotel and restaurant owners, who were quoted saying they were deeply grateful to the PM for the "pleasant surprise" and vowed to "be ready" by 2014.