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26 September 2007

South Africans OK smoking

Two thirds of South Africans believe that it is alright to smoke in public places as long as there is adequate ventilation and designated spaces away from those who do not smoke.

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Two thirds of South Africans believe that it is alright to smoke in public places as long as there is adequate ventilation and designated spaces away from those who do not smoke, according to a study released on Wednesday.

The study, conducted by Synovate, said that South Africa was one of the countries least in favour of smoking bans, although 72 percent supported the move.

This compares with Italy where 96 percent were in favour of smoking bans and Taiwan at 93 percent.

Bulgaria and the Netherlands, gathered 63 percent and 64 percent yes votes for the bans respectively. Globally the figure stands at 80 percent.

Synovate's smoking ban study polled over 8 500 respondents and found that those not in support of the bans think that they are just another way for government to interfere in its citizens' private lives.

According to the study 26 percent of South Africans regard themselves as regular smokers, compared to the global average of 31 percent across the 15 countries surveyed. – (Sapa)

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