Macau’s smoking bill moved a step closer to potentially coming into effect after lawmakers gave their approval during the first reading in the Legislative Assembly at the end of last week, local media reported.
The progress on the bill's debate follows a no-vote the day earlier on Thursday when lawmakers ran out of time.
The bill, which would see the removal of smoking lounges and a ban in VIP rooms, has drawn criticism and worry from casino operators who say it will only compound the city’s downturn.
According to news source TDM Macau, the social affairs secretary said in response to concerns raised by a responsible gaming group of the impact of the ban that the government it will consider finding more effective solutions to a full smoking ban in casinos. He added that the government will consider setting up smoking rooms with independent ventilation systems.
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