In late November 2014, China began the process of introducing laws to enforce smokefree public places and ban tobacco advertising. Unsurprisingly, the state-owned tobacco industry has already started to push back against these essential reforms:
“We must note that smoking has hundreds of years of history and objectively a market demand for cigarettes still exists,” said Ling Chengxing, director of the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration. “Tobacco control is long term, complex and arduous work, and one-sided, absolutist and expansionist tendencies should be carefully avoided.”
China is a signatory to the WHO FCTC and has a population of more than 300 million smokers.