Workshop to Disseminate the MOH Circular #003 on Banning of Smoking and Blowing the Smoke of Tobacco Products at Public and Workplaces

Phnom Penh Capital City Hall

28 July 2014

The workshop hosted by the Phnom Penh Caapital City Hall on 28 July 2014 under financial and technical support from WHO-Cambodia and CMH aimed at disseminating the MOH’s Circular No.003 to 250 relevant stakeholders particularly those represented hospitality services facilities such as hotel, restaurants…etc.

In the welcome remarks, Dr. Carmen Audera Lopez, WHO-WPRO TFI Acting team leader, praised the City Hall for hosting this workshop. She emphasized that every year tobacco kills over 6 million people worldwide, 20% of all diseases and 70% of lung cancer are caused by tobacco consumptions. She continued that tobacco kill innocent people who are non-smokers too through exposure to secondhand smoke and that WHO considers smoking ban at public places is one among other most effective measures in tobacco control. She alerted that without strong enforcement, law can’t be effective; therefore we need your participation in effectively implementing and enforcing the circular. Tobacco Industry will meet you at the hotels and restaurants to tell you a myth that the circular will harm your business while actually it doesn’t.

In his opening speech, H.E Pa Socheatvong stated that the government considers the health sector as a high-priority of the government’s rectangle strategy. He was very pleased to be an active partner of WHO in tobacco control issues and to receive the WNTD-2013 award. He believed that many people who work at the restaurants are exposure to secondhand smoke from their customers on a daily basis and we need this regulation to protect their health. So far the City Hall have been actively participating in enforcing sub-decree on the banning of tobacco advertising by removing advertising materials found violating the sub-decree.

According to the presentation of Mr. Hok Khiev, Head of Legislative Department of the Ministry of Health, he Circular on Measures for the Banning of Smoking and Blowing the Smoke of Tobacco Products bans smoking and blowing of tobacco products at workplaces, all levels of educational institutions, outdoor and indoor public buildings, public transports, health facilities, nurseries, children parks, museums, cultural and historical sites, gas stations, and flammable areas. To implement this circular, directors, owners or managers of aforementioned places have to put no-smoking signs at the entrances of their places or any appropriate locations where they are clearly visible to the public. In case of violation, violators will be told to stop or to smoke outside the buildings. In case of incompliance or repetition, managers or owners of workplaces or public places shall cooperate with competent authorities to warn violators accordingly. (Ms. Y. Phallin, SITT-Cambodia/with contributions from Cambodia Movement for Health)