Tuesday, May 5, 2009

China: Smoke more please

Today the Irish Times have run a story about how the Chinese government are aiming to combat their economic woes... by telling people to smoke more.

"In Gongan county in Hubei province, the order has come down from above that employees of all local government departments, organisations, service centres and corporations must consume at least 23,000 cartons of cigarettes this year" ... One can presume that that quantity is not per person.

This order by the government might seem unrealistic, and well, a little silly, but there are 350m smokers in China so it would seem as if this quantity would have been consumed anyway, the main purpose of the initiative is to get people smoking local brands only.
Citizens are "required to smoke local brands, and anyone smoking other brands can be fined. The smoking allowance aims to boost the regional economy by encouraging more consumption of local cigarettes."

However it would appear like many newspapers have missed the boat on this one and are reporting yesterdays news as Reuters news agency are now reporting a change in heart by the provincial government who seemingly rescinded the order as of today... Not an entirely surprising move to be honest.
Nice try though

1 comment:

Manuel said...

I like the way it says that it 'encourages' people to smoke local brands. If you're getting fined otherwise I think it's a tad more than encouragement. Ah the Chinese, what will they think of next?