Smokers win two year reprieve

  • 2008-04-03
  • By Mike Collier

RIGA -- The Latvian parliament has rejected anattempt to outlaw smoking while driving, but approved measures that will seelighting up banned in all public catering outlets.

Smokers still have two years to puff away to their hearts' discontent though,as the new law will not come into force until April 1 2010.

Saeima approved amendments to the Law on Restrictions regarding Sale, Advertisingand Use of Tobacco that will make it illegal to smoke except in specificallydesignated areas. The new rules will even apply in outdoor cafes and beergardens which will have to create special smokers' sections if they wish toallow patrons to puff.

The law will also be tightened to prevent tobacco being advertised in the pressanywhere except in special publications for the tobacco trade, and publicationsprinted outside the EU.

Billboard advertisements for tobacco products will have to include a healthwarning no smaller than five percent of the advertisement's total area.