No smoking at outdoor restaurants from December, deputy health minister says

Sharina Ahmad
Lee said those found to flout the law can be fined RM10,000 or jailed up to two years. — Picture by Razak Ghazali

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 6 ― Smokers will not be able to light up even when dining al fresco at restaurants nationwide in just three more months.

The Health Ministry has announced that all open air restaurants will be gazetted as non-smoking areas from December, Malay daily Utusan Malaysia reported.

“This gazettement is Malaysia’s commitment as a member state to the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control and adheres to the guidelines under Article 8 of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

“It is also one of the ministry’s initiatives to protect the public from the dangers of cigarette smoke,” Deputy Health Minister Dr Lee Boon Chye was quoted saying in the Dewan Negara yesterday.

He added that those found to flout the law can be fined RM10,000 or jailed up to two years.

Dr Lee was also reported proposing the closure of Parliament’s smoking room next month, in a bid to turn the entire law-making House a smoke-free zone.

He said there are currently 23 areas designated smoke-free under the Control of Tobacco Product (Amendment) Regulations 2017.

These include entertainment centres, theatres, elevators, public toilets, air-conditioned eateries, public vehicles, airports, government premises and any area used for the purpose of assembly.

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