In The Celestial Empire are trying to fight with smokers. But unsuccessfully as of yet. Part 3
Which sanctions are expected for ban breakers? There is no well-defined answer. You may get a rap over the knuckles from part of law enforcement officer or orderly officer; get to awkward situation and come of with light embarrassment. Seldom, but money penalty is also possible. However, it is not fixed yet. Person may pay 1.5 USD but it can also be penalized for 24 USD. In Shanghai as part of antismoking campaign in public places once was made demonstrative special raid. So, penalties for smoking in prohibited place have made from 300 to 1500 USD. Who needs such problems? It is better not to smoke in prohibited places.
And it is prohibited to smoke in public places of China. And it is necessary to know in order to avoid troubles. In the list of such places are airports, railway stations, public transport, child and educational institutions, sport arenas, cyber cafe, parks and places of public entertainment, territories of medical institutions. In cities there are restrictions for points of tobacco products' sale. It is impossible to buy cigarettes in newspaper kiosks or from fruit seller as it was before. Now private sellers get special licenses for tobacco selling. And their shops have the name "Tobacco-Wine". They can be met at every step.
In China you will not see big billboards of world or local tobacco brands. Direct advertising of tobacco smoking is prohibited everywhere, including radio, TV, newspapers, magazines and Internet. On the other side anti-tobacco advertisement is also rarity. China supports UN tobacco control Convention and has even included program of smoking ban in public places in current 12th five-year plan. And if the decision was taken by people above, it means that, smoking control will be strengthened.
However, only with direction from people above the habit that became a tradition and peculiar ritual in peoples' life cannot be changed quickly and moreover eradicated overnight. For many Chinese people cigarette is an attribute of friendly conversation, a way to woo interlocutor. It is common to treat with cigarette. Refusal is taken as offence sometimes. Expensive and rare sort of cigarettes are presented as gratitude for services rendered; it is common to present them to bosses, business partners and also on anniversaries and weddings. Even policemen will close eyes on traffic infraction for "present" in form of pack of good cigarettes.