Beijing has fewer smokers in 2017

Updated 2018-01-14 09:31:06 Xinhua

Non-smoking banners are displayed on the iconic Bird's Nest National Stadium in Beijing,June 1, 2015.

The number of smokers in Beijing was 3.99 million in 2017, 1.1 percentage points lower than the figure before the city's smoking ban was enforced in June 2015, local authorities said Friday.

It amounts to 200,000 less smokers in the city over the past two and a half years, according the municipal health and family planning commission.

Medical institutes in Beijing offered smoking cessation services to over 7.4 million people, and a total of 61 hospitals in the city opened smoking cessation clinics.

Beijing implemented what has been deemed the "strictest smoking ban in history" on June 1, 2015, prohibiting smoking in indoor public places, workplaces and public transportation.

In 2017, 95 percent of the inspected places were operating in accordance with the regulation, much higher than the 77 percent in the middle of 2015. Medical institutions, schools and hotels had the best implementation. Internet cafes and KTVs tended to violate the regulation most frequently.

"We will intensify supervision in 2018 and continue to conduct undercover and targeted inspections. We also encourage the public to report to us if they see any violation," said Liu Zejun with the commission.

More than 14,800 volunteers assisted in dealing with 4,547 smoking-related complaints in Beijing in 2017. Their combined service reached 77,000 hours.

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