Philippine President Duterte took anti-drug storms after taking office, and now he is looking into the field of public health and preparing to prohibit smoking in public places.
Health Minister Rosseli Ubbia disclosed that a draft administrative order banning smoking in public places has been submitted to Duterte, and if he can sign an administrative order by the end of this month, the ban will come into effect next month.
Once implemented, all indoor and outdoor public places in the country will become smoke-free zones. Smoking will also be prohibited in parks and bus stops and even in buses. The ban on smoking will also include the ban on the use of electronic cigarettes.
It is learned that specific smoking areas will be set at least 10 meters away from the buildings.
Kenneth, the deputy finance minister, said the government will also propose to increase taxes on cigarettes and other tobacco products.
Public health activists have long advocated that the government should take more action against smoking and therefore welcome the smoking ban in this public place.
They believe that with Duterte's strict ban on anti-moral conduct, the ban on smoking will be effectively implemented.
According to a report by the Southeast Asian Tobacco Control Coalition in 2014, as many as 17 million Filipinos, or one-third of the total adult population, have a habit of smoking. Smoking prevalence ranks second in Southeast Asia, just behind Indonesia. Nearly half of Filipino men and 9% of women have a habit of smoking.