Philippines: Duterte to ban smoking inside all buildings nationwide

17 October 2016:

President also eyes national firecracker ban, but will study economic impact first

In a press briefing Sunday before he left for Brunei, Duterte said building administrators installing cubicles just to accommodate smokers would not be considered complying with the law. The President emphasized that smokers would have to go out of a building to smoke.

“If you want to smoke, find a place outside,” Mr. Duterte said.

The President left for state visits in Brunei and China.

“I’m worried about establishments building structures inside just to accommodate smokers,” he said. “That ain’t the way; it must be out,” he added.

He said the smoking ban in the entire country would follow the Davao City experience, where smoking has been disallowed in enclosed establishments, and smokers would go to an open-air designated smoking area to indulge in their habit.

Duterte, a mayor of Davao City for 22 years before he was elected President, said that aside from the smoking ban, he has been considering banning firecrackers in the entire country.

Duterte said he would sign the EO banning smoking inside buildings nationwide after his trip to Brunei and China, but would still have to study with his Cabinet the economic impact of the proposed ban on firecrackers.

“(On the proposed) firecracker ban, I’m still studying the full economic (impact of the ban), baka may mawalan ng negosyo, lahat na (in case some businesses might close shop, and all), so, I will need the Cabinet to decide,” Duterte said.

“It will be a Cabinet decision,” he added.

Smoking and firecrackers, and at certain hours of the night, liquor had been banned in Davao City for over 14 years.  SFM/rga