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Nationwide Smoking Ban Comes Into Effect

Published: June 1, 2014 (Issue # 1813)



  • Russian business owners who allow smoking on their premises are liable for fines of up to 90,000 rubles ($2,578).
    Photo: Ken Hawkins / Flickr

At 12:01 a.m. on June 1, a nationwide smoking ban in all enclosed public places went into effect across Russia.

The ban comes after smoking was prohibited in a number of public places including, at schools and universities, cultural and sporting organizations, beaches, stadiums, playgrounds, hospitals and in the offices of public organizations on June 1, 2013. Fines began to be introduced for smoking in these places from Nov. 15, 2013.

The newest restriction now forbids smoking in any public space, including hotels, restaurants and cafes, bars, trains and ships. Previously, restaurants and cafes were able to offer non-smoking sections and remain in compliance with the law. From today, patrons will only be allowed to smoke outdoors.

Business owners who allow smoking on their premises are now liable for fines of up to 90,000 rubles ($2,578). Smokers will be fined from 500 to 1,500 rubles ($14.32 to $42.98) for breaking the law.

The new law also regulates the way in which tobacco products can be sold and displayed. From June 1, cigarettes may be sold only in licensed shops and they may no longer be displayed. The law on sales is expected to have the greatest negative impact on small business owners who operate kiosks, which are no longer permitted to offer cigarettes for sale.

Russian legislation follows similar laws which have been enacted in many parts of the world over the past several decades.

A Gallup poll of over 26,500 Europeans conducted in December 2008 found "a majority of EU citizens support smoking bans in public places, such as offices, restaurants and bars." The poll also found that "support for workplace smoking restrictions is slightly higher than support for such restrictions in restaurants (84% vs. 79%). Two-thirds support smoke-free bars, pubs and clubs."





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Oct. 24


SPIBA’s ongoing “Breakfast with the Director” series continues today, featuring Tomas Hajek, Managing Director of the Northwest Division at Danone Russia. Hajek will be discussing collaborations between businesses from different cultures. The meeting is at 9 a.m. at the Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel and all who wish to attend must confirm their participation by Oct. 23.


Get your gong on at “Sounds of the Universe,” a concert at the city planetarium this evening incorporating six different gongs to create relaxing songs that will transport you upwards into the stratosphere. Tickets are 700 rubles ($17).



Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop culture, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the club’s website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit “Neophobia” at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBA’s Marketing and Communications Committee’s round table discussion on “Government Relations Practices in Russia” this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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