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NK parliament adopts non-smoking law

North holding a plenary meeting of the 14th Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly to discuss the tobacco prohibition law and revision to the enterprise law. (KCNA-Yonhap)
North holding a plenary meeting of the 14th Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly to discuss the tobacco prohibition law and revision to the enterprise law. (KCNA-Yonhap)
The standing committee of the North Korean parliament adopted a non-smoking law and a revised corporate law, the North’s state media reported on Thursday.

Under the new law, smoking is banned in designated areas such as theaters, cinemas and other public spaces, childcare centers, educational institutions, medical and health facilities, commercial facilities and on public transportation, said the North’s Korean Central News Agency.

Pyongyang had enacted a “smoking control” law in 2005 that prohibits smoking in public venues.

The new law consisting of 31 articles calls for stronger surveillance and punishment on violators.

North Korea has often disclosed photographs of its leader Kim Jong-un smoking while visiting places to provide “guidance.”

The revised corporate law stipulates that when business establishments such as factories undergo changes to save more energy and costs, or set up a new corporation or go under the supervision of a different government entity, their production and business activities must be carried out according to Socialist principles under state guidance.

The details of the revised corporate law have not been disclosed, but the KCNA report suggests that the North Korean government has toughened its control on business activities, shifting from a policy of strengthening the autonomy and independence of business establishments.

The meeting was presided by Choe Ryong-hae, chief of the standing committee of the Supreme People’s Assembly, and attended by vice chairmen and general secretary of the SPA standing committee.

The North Korean parliament revises the country’s Constitution and laws; sets up the basic principles for state policy; decides personnel reshuffles in major state organizations; and approves budget bills.

By Kim So-hyun  (sophie@heraldcorp.com)
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