Restrictions on smokers in Korea are on the rise.
Earlier this year, the Seoul Metropolitan Government banned smoking in thousands of areas around Seoul and anyone caught lighting up was hit with a hefty fine.
Now the central government is spreading the regulations to towns and cities across the country.
The Ministry of Health and Welfare announced Tuesday that the revised bill to ban smoking at indoor rest areas and restaurants was passed Monday and will come into effect from Saturday.
Any restaurants over 150 square meters in area will have to ban smoking on their premises.
Before, restaurants were only obligated to assign half the area for non-smokers.
Over 75-thousand restaurants will have to follow the regulations starting December 8th. Smokers will only be allowed to smoke in designated enclosed smoking areas.
Those violating the regulations will be hit where it hurts the most. Their pocket.
Premises that don't stick to the rules can be fined up to to five million won or roughly five thousand U.S. dollars.
Individual smokers can be fined up to 100 dollars.
In addition, cigarette companies will be prohibited from advertising their products as menthol, coffee or any other flavor from this Saturday
Kim Hyun-bin Arirang News