KUALA LUMPUR – After a year of educating the public and creating greater awareness, the smoking ban is set to come into full effect on Jan 1, 2020.
Since it was introduced by the Health Ministry (MoH) on Jan 1 this year, eatery owners and operators are all ready for the ruling on the smoking ban with the “no-smoking” signage and notice having been put up at their respective premises, although they have got two days more to do so before the ban comes into force.
Some eateries even went to the extent of providing a smoking room or a place to sit outside the set parameter of three meters away for smokers to light up.
Malaysian Muslim Restaurant Owners Association (Presma) president Datuk Jawahar Ali Taib Khan said the staff of Indian Muslim restaurants had been educated on the ban from day one.
When the smoking ban was announced on Jan 1, 2019, no-smoking signs were put up at all Mamak restaurants, and the staff was instructed to tell customers to light up or vape three meters away.
Jawahar said: “After a year of having to smoke three meters away, I believe smoking customers will have no problems continuing to obey the rule. “
The enforcement period will now give way to full enforcement of the ban. From Jan 1 onwards, it will prove costly for patrons to light up at eateries nationwide.
Food and beverage outlets that allow patrons to light up will also be slapped with the same compound amount, said Health Ministry director-general Datuk Dr. Noor Hisham Abdullah.
He said the compounds will be imposed from Wednesday onwards, as a crackdown on smoking at eateries nationwide takes effect.
Dr. Noor Hisham said the extension of the smoking ban to eateries was done under Regulation 11 (1) (d) of the Tobacco Control Regulation (PPKHT) Regulations 2004 (amended) 2018.
“For full enforcement purposes beginning Jan 1, 2020, those found smoking in prohibited areas, including all eateries, would be charged a compound of RM250. For the second offense, there is no reduction to the compound and full payment of RM250 will be charged, and see the amount increased to RM350 for a third offense and so on.”Dr Noor Hisham said in a statement
Dr. Noor Hisham added that under Regulation 12 of PPKHT 2004, eatery owners must also ensure that their premises are completely smoke-free. They are also forbidden from providing amenities for smokers to take a puff, including ashtrays or shisha services. And must also ensure that the “no smoking” sign is displayed prominently and clearly in an area which is visible to all
There are currently 23 types of establishments designated as smoke-free under the PPKHT (Amendment) Regulations 2017.
They include entertainment centers, theatres, elevators, public toilets, air-conditioned eateries, public vehicles, airports, government premises and any area used for the purpose of the assembly.
Meanwhile, Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan said the Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) had installed the no-smoking signage at most buildings, including government premises.
“We have installed many no-smoking signages in the city, with the big ones at several locations, including on the large screen at Dataran Merdeka and also in Bukit Bintang.”
“To date, about 3,000 notices and posters have been issued by DBKL’s Health and Environment Department and the Department of Environment at open food premises in the city since January this year.”Kuala Lumpur mayor Datuk Nor Hisham Ahmad Dahlan
Nor Hisham said 200 enforcement personnel will be mobilized to carry out an inspection at food premises in the city to ensure compliance.
Dr. Noor Hisham said that as such, support and cooperation from all quarters, especially the Housing and Local Government Ministry, is essential in ensuring that the full implementation of PPKHT 2004 goes smoothly.
Beginning Jan 1, 2020, the ban on smoking in open-air premises under Regulation 11(1)(d) of the Tobacco Control Regulations 2004, will be enforced with legal action to be taken against errant smokers.
Further reading about Vaping policy in Malaysia:
- Malaysia Considers Total E-Cigarette Ban
- Malaysia Plans to Regulate E-Cigarettes as Tobacco Products
- Malaysia: E-Cigarette Groups Launch Nationwide Petition to Push for Government Regulation in Sale and Use of Nicotine Vape
- Ministry Health of Malaysia: Enforcement Measures Being Taken to Curb Vaping Among Students
- Malaysia: Integrated Enforcement to Curb E-Cigarettes, Vape