Bulgarian Socialist Party tables legislation to ease public smoking ban

A group of Bulgarian Socialist Party MPs have tabled legislation that would withdraw the full ban on smoking in enclosed public spaces such as restaurants and bars and replace it with a system like the one that was in effect before June 2012, allowing separate smoking areas.

The draft bill to amend the Health Act, tabled in the National Assembly on October 16, will be discussed by Parliament’s health committee next week, committee chairperson Nigyat Jaffer said on October 17.

The bill provides for owners of premises of less than 70 sq m to decide whether the place of entertainment would be smoking or non-smoking.

Premises larger than that would be able to have separate smoking areas, with separate ventilation, a provision similar to that in effect before the full ban came into effect in June 2012.

Smoking areas would be closed to people younger than 18. The bill also returns the provision for smoking areas to be designated by signs.

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(Photo: Rodrigo Matias/sxc.hu)