China is soliciting public opinion on its environmental
sanitation regulations which envisage tougher disinfection,
ventilation and hygiene standards.
"Smoking will be banned in taxis, buses, air-conditioned trains,
planes and waiting rooms. Areas of high pedestrian density should
be no-smoking areas and should be equipped with special ventilation
facilities," says a draft revision of China's environmental
sanitation regulations, published on Thursday by the State Council,
Business operators must place visible prohibition signs in
no-smoking areas. Individuals or organizations who install
automatic tobacco vending machines will be fined up to 5,000 yuan
(US$650), according to the draft revision by the Ministry of
The original regulation, two decades old, has been outpaced by
rapid social and economic development. The revised regulation
expands its scope to cover all public places with a special focus
on hotels, public toilets, swimming pools, beauty parlors and
"Local health officials who cover up public health incidents
such as epidemics will be demoted or expelled, and business
operators who delay in reporting public health incidents in their
precincts will be fined up to 30,000 yuan (US$3,900)," the
It also requires operators to install air purification
facilities to prevent the spread of disease, and those defying
hygiene rules and facilitating the spread of infectious diseases
will have their business licenses revoked and be fined up to
100,000 yuan (US$13,000), and could be charged with crimes.
The revised regulation bans the opening of public places that
are being renovated. Reopening must wait until the air quality has
reached normal standards.
"Disposable products, such as chopsticks, should not be used
more than once. In restaurants and places of entertainment,
drinking water, lighting and noise must conform to national
standards," it said.
(Xinhua News Agency June 22, 2007)